A1r 16231623 omitted

Apologie against the

A Vindication of
Susanna Parr; one of
those two Women lately Excommunicated
by Mr Lewis Stycley, and his
Church in Exeter.

Composed and Published by her selfe, for the clearing
of her own Innocency, and the Satisfaction
of all others, who desire to know the true
Reason of their so rigorous Proceedings
against her.

Whose hatred is covered by deceit, his wickednesse shall be shewed before the whole Congregation. Prov. 26. 26.
They shall put you out of the Synagogues, yea the time cometh, that whosoever killeth you will think that he doth God service. Joh. 16. 2.
Let us go forth therefore unto him without the Campe, bearing his reproach, Heb. 13. 13.

1659-05-12May: Printed in the Year, 1659. May. 12 1 or 2 charactersobscured

A1v A2r

To the Impartiall Reader.

It is a thorny path, and a myrie way that I am compelled to walke in; a way wherein there is a danger of loosing more in all likelyhood, rather then of regaining what is already lost. A way, the walking wherein, all the comfort I have, is the hope of getting out of it at last, and so it concerns me to hasten as fast as I can. In it I meet with the Enemies Sword, covered over with zeale for God and his glory, when as nothing of this hath appeared in the least, either in the worke, or in the managing thereof: Satan is now transformed into an Angel of light, But my hope is, that he will in the end appear to be no other than he is, a prince of darknesse, a black grisely Divel, Jealousy, and censorious Slander, the discovery of which, is the worke I am at present engaged in, the designe of this following Vindication: a worke it is no lesse difficult and dangerous, then troublesome, and unpleasing, in respect of my selfe who write, the things whereof I write, and the persons against whom I write.

Weaknesse is entailed upon my Sex in generall, and for my selfe in particular, I am a despised worme, a woman full of naturall and sinfullA2 full A2v full infirmities, the chiefest of Sinners, and least of Saints: should the Lord contend with me, I must lay my hand upon my mouth, I must acknowledge him to be just and righteous in suffering them to deale thus with me; neither should I put my selfe to the trouble of a Vindication, but leave the clearing of my Innocency to that day which he hath appointed to judge the world in righteousnesse. I have cause to remember, and be ashamed before the Lord, there being Iniquity even in my holy things; yet as to them, my heart doth not reproach mee, but on the contrary, I have great cause of rejoycing, in the uprightnesse of my heart, as to the things of God, and in my abundant love and affections unto them, my heart was enlarged in love towards them, and therefore my mouth was opened upon all occasions for their good: though I was of a stamering Tongue, slow of speech, and wanted eloquence, yet the desire I had of their perfection, made me forward to speake to them in generall, and in particular: the Lord knowes I lie not, my conscience also bearing me witnesse. I mourned with them that mourned, rejoyced with them that rejoyced; when any were under temptations, or afflictions, I did labour to sympathize with them, as if they were mine owne, and did engage for them at the Throne of Grace as for my selfe. And as for that which I did oppose among them, it was matter of mourning unto mee, when I apprehended the glory of Christ, and their particularcular A3r cular interest, could not stand together, I then withstood them, resolving not to spare any that stood in the way of Christ, and the Gospels enlargement. It is my comfort that the Lord seeth not as man seeth, man looketh on the outward appearance, but the Lord looketh on the heart: not he that commendeth himselfe, but he whom the Lord commendeth is approved. Though they have proceeded to Censure me, and have been full of Cursing and bitternesse, returning evill for good; yet I shall pray, Lord lay not this sin to their charge: they know not what Spirit they are of.

Besides my personall weaknesses, the many Family-cares that lie upon me, must needs unfit me for such a worke, and very much disinable me to write even of those things which were newly done, and fresh in my memory, much more to write of these, which they charged me with, being some of them transacted Seaven or Eight yeares since: In the laying down of which, if my memory should fail me, I need not tell thee (if thou knowest Mr. Stucley and his Congregation) what an improvement they will make thereof, for the justifying of their late unchristian Censure, of whom I have cause to complaine, as the Church in the words of Jeremiah, Lam. 3. 53. they have cut off my life in the dungeon, and cast a stone upon me, which they threaten to eternity. Surely they who have been so wicked as to censure me without any ground, will not stick to take hold of the least occasion for the maintaining A3 of A3v of it, and though I have in part been cleared by the Ministers of Exeter from their forged accusations, who received me jointly into communion with them, yet my Adversaries being so crafty, cruell, and powerfull, it will be no hard matter for them to beare downe all their gain-sayers; whosoever shall dare to contradict them, unlesse the Lord himselfe take them in hand, and then though they are mightier then I, yet they will find to their cost, that he is higher then they, to him I have committed my way, in him is my trust, therefore my confidence is, that he will bring it to passe, seeing my undertaking is not so much for my selfe, as for the Lord, for his servants and for his people.

It cannot be (whatever Mr Stucley sayes to the contrary, p. 46. of his answer to Mr Toby Allen) but that a slur is cast (by their censuring mee) on the Ministers and people of God, in this City, it must needs reflect very much on them, who have received such a daughter of Belial; such a lyer, &c. (as he tels the world confidently enough I am) into communion and fellowship with them. I looke on it as my duty, to keep the house of God pure, to the uttermost of my power, which in this case I cannot doe, without clearing my selfe from those crimes layd to my charge. Had Mr Stucley dealt ingeniously with his Readers, in discovering the right and true grounds of his Excommunication (viz:) my hearing another Minister, whiles I was with them, and after my leaving them, my refusing to returne, unlesse I might have A4r the liberty of communion with other of Gods people in this City, then it would have beene apparent, that their censuring mee was no other then the smiting of the watchmen, for seeking after my beloved, and so have freed mee from a great deale of trouble: But seeing he hath dealt so craftily as to omit them, and lay other things to my charge in their place, it will be worth the while a little to uncase him in his cōomparisons, for the undeceiving of those, who (by his two Books) may be perswaded to thinke that Mris Allen and my self are indeed children of hell, and fitter for fellowship with damned spirits, then to be associates of the Lords people; p. 11. True Acc: And that they on the other side are a selfe denying people, trampling the world under their feet, keeping judgement and doing righteousnesse at all times, having their hands filled with both the Tables, and an equall respect to all Gods Commandements, pag. 13.

To this end I shall declare,

First, the ground of my joyning with them; and here I cannot but take shame to my selfe, for being so rash; as because of their specious pretences, to forsake the societie of Gods people, and joine with them, before I saw what worke they would make.

Secondly, the manner of our joining together, and my coming in unto them.

Thirdly, some remarkable passages, I observed whiles I was with them, together with my behaviour in reproofe, admonition, and admission of members.

A4 Fourthly, A4v

Fourthly, declare the grounds of the difference between us, and of my leaving them, and also how I left them.

Lastly, wipe off the reproaches they have cast upon mee, since my leaving them.

All which I shall set upon in the strength of Christ, who is able to make the foolish things of the world to confound the wise, and the weake things of the world to confound the mighty: And never had a poore creature greater cause to flie for refuge to the hope set before mee in the Gospel, to get within the vaile, and shrowd my selfe under the wings of the Almighty, till these calamities be overpast, then I have: my enemies are many, and I am single; they wise, or rather crafty, I simple; they mighty, I weake; they have witnesses (as Mr Stucley affirmes) I none; and which is worst of all, by accusing mee of lying, by making me a notorious lyar, they have endeavoured to stop the eares of the people, and take them off from believing, and giving credit to what I write: so that if the Lord doth not bring forth my righteousnesse as the light, and my judgement as the noone day, I can looke for none other then to become a Prey (by my writing) unto those who wait for my halting, who have (as farre as I can perceive) taken up a resolution, (according to the Elders threatning) to make my going away cost mee dearer, then my coming among them. Its true, I have not yet resisted unto blood, yet A5r yet I know not how soon I may, they have endeavoured to deprive mee of my good name, which is of more worth then riches, and the next in esteeme to life it selfe. And what they will do next, had they power in their hands, the Lord knowes! it is to be feared that they who have beene so forward to Smite with the Tongue, will not be backward to strike with the hand, when occasion shall serve: The Papists, when they had put a Cap upon the head of John Husse, on which were painted severall ugly devils, presently after cast him into the fire: if that which was his lot, and the lot of other servants of God, be mine, the will of the Lord be done: It is my resolution to part with all, rather then returne to such a backsliding, and selfe seeking people: And therefore my request is unto you, the Ministers of Christ in this Nation, that you would take my case into your serious consideration, and call Mr Stucley to an account, for his disorderly smiting his fellow-servants: That you, who have so openly declared against Separation, and charged it as a duty on strayers to returne into the fold of Christ, would encourage others to follow our example, by defending us against the assaults and endeavours of those who have dealt so outragiously with us, upon no other account then our leaving them, and returning unto you, as it will appeare in the following Narrative and Vindication, from which A5v which I shall no longer detaine you, but conclude and shut up all with this request; that you would in the examination of what I have said, not looke to words or expressions which may not be so fitly placed, but to the things themselves, and the truth of them, which was the chiefe ayme (in writing) of her, who still professeth herselfe to be an engaged servant to Jesus Christ in Gospel bonds

Susanna Parr

Nar- A6r


Wee were told in the time of the Warres, that when the Lord did turne our Captivity, there must be a thorough Reformation, every thing must be brought to the patterne in the Mount; and by some, that rather no Reformation, then a partiall Reformation; and in speciall, the last warre by many was stiled a Sacramentall warre.

Considerations of this nature made me willing to engage where was most purity as to the Ordinances, and the great affection and good opinion I had of the New-England Churches, made mee in liking with the Congregationall way: Besides it is well knowne, how much was Explicit Cov.Covenant spoken of a Church State, and the priviledges thereof: A greater effusion of the Spirit, more purity and holinesse, more union and communion, more liberty of Conscience, and freedome from that yoke of being servants unto men, in this Church State, then could be found elsewhere: Many such considerations made me engage in this way, which we did after this manner.

Mr A6v 2

Mr Stucley being at Torrington, and coming often to this City, speaking very much in commendation of Mr Bartlets Church at Brideford, and the order therein, and also exhorting mee, and others to meet together, telling us that we did not live like Christians, because we had not communion one with another, and that we must come together, so that we might be in a capacity of having the ordinances; we thereupon met very often, the time was spent in praying, and speaking one to another, what God had done for our soules: And to this we were enjoyned secrecie, the reason was given, because we might be put upon such tēemptations (if it were knowne) as wee could not resist. This practise wee continued once or twice a weeke for a long time, M. Stucley promising to be at our meetings, which he accordingly performed sometimes. At length some of us desired to have the Sacrament of the Lords Supper, and because of that confusion which was among us, in that we wanted abilities for the right managing of our weekly Exercises, wee desired likewise to have a Minister, M. Hanmer was pitcht upon by some, but opposed by others, in the end wee agreed to leave it to M. Bartlet of Brideford, whether M. Hanmer, or M. Stucley was the fittest for us, hereupon wee sent messengers to M. Bartlet, who when they came to his house found M. Stucley himselfe there, M. Bartlet told the messengers, he conceivedceived A7r 3 ceived M. Stucley was fittest for the present: but however hee would acquaint M. Hanmer with the businesse, which he did, but M. Hanmer refused it. After this M. Stucley came to continue in this City, yet not quitting Torrington till the meanes was setled on him here. And now againe some of us (the greater number were very indifferent) renewed our former desires of having the Sacrament, and sent about it to M. Bartlet, who said, we were not as yet in a capacity to have that Ordinance, that it was necessary we should be first in a Gospel order embodied: and said moreover, that then wee should see much of God, that the day of our embodying would be such a day as we had never seene. A while after M. Bartlet came to the City with his Church officers, he himselfe prayed and preached on Zech. 6. 12. in the morning, afterwards seven or eight persons spake out the experiences they had of the change of their condition, with which I was much affected, and through M. Stucleys perswasion did the like. Afterwards there was a confession of faith read, being a Copy of that which was composed by M. Hughes, which Copy we had not from the Author, but from another, this confession of faith was subscribed by every one of us: And then M. Bartlet made some proposals unto us by way of quare, to this effect as I remember.

I. Whether A7v 4

1. Whether we would take Christ for our Judge, King, and Law-giver.

2. Whether wee would renounce all wayes of false worship?

3. Whether wee would worship God in all his Ordinances?

4. Whether we would give up our selves to the Lord, and one to another, and would engage our selves in all duties of Christianity each unto other?

5. Whether wee would hold communion with other Churches?

6. Whether wee would relieve the Saints that were in Communion, according to our abilitie?

7. Whether we would not rest in the light that we had received, but would study to know the mind of God, and live up unto it?

This is the substance of our engagement, as I remember. At this time and somewhile after, there was never a woman of the Church but my selfe, and yet at every meeting about Church affaires Master Stucley would send for mee, and when I pleaded for my absence (at such times) from the meetings, that of the Apostle, Let your women keep silence in the Church, for it is not permitted unto them to speake; he replyed, he would do nothing without the consent of the whole. And when I was present, he himselfe would constraine me to speak my opinion of things proposed.

Wee A8r 5

We were (as I said formerly) very desirous of the Sacrament, in order to which, our first work was to get a Minister that might administer it.

Although Master Stucley was with us, yet the people of Torrington claimed an engagement from him, that Towne having been visited with the plague, and deprived of their Mininisters maintenance. Master Stucley (who was their Minister) for those reasons left them; but with a promise of returning so soon as the Lord should remove his hand, and sufficient maintenance for a Minister should be procured, both which being at this time effected, we could not chuse him to be an Officer, untill he were by them freed from his engagement: in order hereunto much meanes was used, Master Bartlet was imployed to perswade them unto it; but they with one consent refused it, saying, that seeing he had promised to returne, they expected that he should keep promise with them.

Hereupon we wrote for counsell to some of the Congregationall Churches in London, Master Feake, and Master Harrison (in their answers to our Letters) affirmed that Master Stucley was bound in conscience to goe unto Torrington: that it would be dishonourable to the Gospel to leave them, unlesse he could get their consent for his dismission. At length Master Stucley himselfe accompanied with two or three of the Church rode thither, where having made A8v 6 made an agreement with the people, those that rode with him were called in to consent therunto, which they accordingly did.

At their returne Master Stucley required each one of us to consent likewise unto the agreement they made at Torrington, without declaring what it was; which being done by all the men, he desired the sisters (there being other women now added to the Church) to do the like, which my selfe and some others refused, resolving that we would not act by an implicite faith. Master Stucley thereupon said, that what was done was a Church act, because they who went with him consented thereunto (viz.) that we were engaged to get a Minister for the people of Torrington. Accordingly there was one procured, who continued with them for a time.

This Serpentine subtilty of his I tooke speciall notice of, and did for it reprove him to his face: we were in the meane time (and so continued for some yeares) in a bewildred condition, without either of the Sacraments, some not having their children baptized in a long time, others did procure some Congregationall Minister to do it. And as for the Lords Supper, they who would partake of it; rode to other places in the Country: most of the people were very indifferent whether we had the Ordinances or no, seeking themselves, getting places and offices, designing how they might build their B1r 7 their owne houses: and as for Master Stucley himselfe, he was so distracted with Law-suits, Intangled with the world and mony engagements, as that he was seldome with us at our fasts and times of prayer.

Hence I began to suspect, that they intended nothing but separation, and setting up of themselves and their owne interests and designes, which did exceedingly trouble mee.

Upon our private fast dayes, when wee had done praying, it was our custome (for the help of those that were to pray) to spend a little time in Conference, and at such times did I take occasion to speak of the disorders among us, & told thēem plainly, that I feard we did separate frōom others more godly then our selves, as Cain, who went out from the presence of the Lord to build citties; that there was little regard had to what we at first pretended, the setting up of pure ordinances; I often told them that I never heard or read in Scripture, or other history, that the Lord did make use of a people of such an earthly, luke-warme, and indifferent spirit, in any publique worke of reformation; that it was not a party, or confederacy that I looked after, but to have the Gospel more discovered in greater light and beauty; and the ordinances to be enjoyed in greater purity: the beauty of Gods ornament to be set in Majestie, and more purity and selfe-deniall to appeare in us, who B had B1v 8 had separated from all mixtures.

Because I conceive that purity lay onely in this way, therefore was I very forward and zealous in it, hoping to leave posterity the ordinances pure, and the name of God glorious in the brightnesse of the Gospel: for this cause did I deale so plainly with them; with which plaine and faithfull dealing, they pretended many times to be much affected, and thereupon would do something more in order to Religion, then they had formerly.

Master Stucley (as I said before) being troubled about the things of this world, left us to our selves very often in our meetings: so that it is not to be wondred at, if in them there were much strange fire, both in prayer and exposition of the Scriptures, they being meere Novices, and in the entrance of Christianity, and many of them scarce well principled, I feared that the name of God was often taken in vain in prayer, sure I am that much ignorance, pride, and selfe confidence, and a Diotrephes spirit strongly working, appeared in many of them.

N. E. One of them affirmed, that there was no iniquity of the holy things &c. this being delivered without any caution when the meeting was publique, I told him of it in private the same day.

Owen. Another who had formerly beene an Anabaptist, then a Seeker, next (as I was informed) aB2r9 a Papist, or little better, very much addicted to the study of their bookes, the most conviction that he had (as was reported) was by Jonas Ware, since a Roman Catholique, who went to Rome, and then turning to prelacy, and the booke of Common-prayer, and afterward an Independent, the same person was very forward at our meetings, and did often put forth himselfe in the duty of prayer, which was a great trouble to mee to heare how the name of God was taken in vaine by him, insomuch as that I earnestly desired Master Stucley to hinder him from engaging in that duty, till he understood the nature of it better.

I acquainted him likewise of other disorders and miscarriages very frequent at our meetings, declaring how much I was troubled at them; for redresse of which, I intreated him to be constantly with us. But he endeavoured to quiet me with this, that they were honest, though weak, and further perswaded me to be constant at the meetings, to be faithfull unto them, in minding them of what was amisse. I told him it was more fit for me to be in private meditation, to be gathering rather then scattering: but he replyed, that the time was now not to be Closet-Professors, but to say, come, let us go up to the house of the Lord, to seek the Lord together, with our faces Zion-ward. And though I pleaded my Sex, my naturall B2 and B2v 10 and sinfull infirmities, which made me unfit to speak unto others, yet he pressed it on me as my duty. And when there was any Jarring between them and my selfe, he desired me not to be troubled, though I met with opposition, that one was of a Souldierly spirit, another of a dull Spirit, that it was meere Envy, promising to speak with them about it himselfe. Yea when I resolved to be silent at some meetings, Mr. Stucley himselfe would single me out, and even constraine me to speak.

As concerning my Carriage at the Admission of members, I shall give a briefe account of it as followeth.

They who desired admission into the Society, were sometimes desired in a private meeting to speak what experience they had of the worke of grace upon their Soules: after which we were every one of us both men and women to declare our thoughts of what was spoken; it being laid down as a ground, that we must have an account of a change from a naturall and legall estate, into an estate of grace and believing, of those whom we admitted into communion with us. I among the rest did according to my weak measure declare my selfe against that which I thought would not stand for grace. I was so far from delighting in this work, as that it was a trouble to me, an Imployment from which I would willingly have been B3r 11 been freed: I conceived it more needfull for my selfe to study the worrd, and compare my own heart with the rule, then to be so taken up about the condition of others. But this was our principle, we were to keep the house of God pure, we were set as Porters at the door, it was our duty, we were not to be wanting at such times, yea it was our liberty, that we, who were to have communion with those who came to be admitted, should give in our assent, or dissent in reference to their admission. I did therefore at such times declare my thoughts as well as the rest, but left the determination to themselves, as it appeares in Ganicle, who was admitted, though I was at the first against his admission. I mention him, because he was brought by Mr. Eveleigh, as an Instance of my censoriousnesse. I was blamed for disliking him, whom they said was one of the most eminent among them, and yet it was not long after, before he discovered himselfe, by Renouncing the principles of Christianity, and turning Quaker. He in speaking out his Experiences pretended unto much Joy and ravishment of Spirit, but (the Lord knowes) when he spake of such enjoyments, he spake as a stranger that never intermedled with this Joy, never declaring any powerfull effect thereof, but only that which was, only but a Balaams wish. I the rather instance in B3 him, B3v 12 him, because he was the first that kindled the fire of Contention, which then brake out in that manner, as it is not quenched to this day; here began the Quarrell on their part. When I was called by the Elder to give in my thoughts concerning a Person proposed, he most disorderly intercepted me, for which there was not the least admonition given him: but not long after his folly was made manifest, by his Casting off the very forme of godlinesse. This is one and the Cheife one of those persons whom I disliked, though approved of by the Church. If I be contentious for opposing such a one, let me be contentious still; though none among them will witnesse for me, yet he doth, he stands to this day as a sad witnesse between me and them, whether I were contentious in my oppositions, or they infallible in their determinations. Besides, as for some who continue among them, if you look for distinguishing Characters, they are scarcely visible, much lesse easy to be discerned.

Thus I did from time to time, whilst we were without Officers and Ordinances, partly through the great desire I had to promote the worke of Reformation among us, partly through Mr Stucley’s instigation reprove them for their indifferency of Spirit, stir them up to that which I conceived was their duty, for which I alwaies gave them my grounds and reasons B4r 13 reasons. But after the officers were chosen, I never medled (to my remembrance) with Church affaires, nor spake in the meetings, after I heard by Mr. Stucley my speaking was disrelisht; unlesse a Question was proposed, and I was desired to give my Answer unto it.

Not long after, the Officers were chosen, I being at Mr. Stucley’s house, desired him to resolve me concerning a true Church, he then confessed that the Churches of New England did acknowledge the Churches of old England, from whence we had separated, to be true Churches: I told him thereupon that we could not justifie our Separation. At length we falling into discourse of other things, he said my speaking was disrelisht by some; I answered, that I did not like it my selfe, and therefore would be from thenceforth silent, though I looked on it as my duty formerly, he told me no, he would have me speak, but it must be by a Brother; for a stander by may see more then he that plaies the game, promising likewise if I did speak by him, to deliver my words in the same manner as I spake them.

After this it pleased the Lord to exercise me with a smarting affliction, the death of a dear child; the suddennesse of the stroke, and some other circumstances made it a very melting affliction. When my Bowels were yerningning B4v 14 ning towards my child, I called to remembrance the Lords tender bowels towards his children, for whom he had given his only Son; when I considered the breach that the Lord had made in my family, I beheld how terrible it was to make a breach of his family. Then the worke I was ingaged in, this Sin of Separation, appeared nakedly unto me to be no other then a wounding of Christs body, which is his Church, the Church which he hath purchased with his own blood: I then looked on Separation to be a dividing of Christ. Truly I beheld it with terror, this sin of wounding of Christ it made a wound in my soule, which was kept open in a terrible manner, the Lord bringing to my remembrance his Justice and severity, and wrath revealed from heaven on families and nations, yea on his own people, ever since the beginning of the world: as also his Judgments which are in the earth to this day, from Genesis to the Revelation was brought to my remembrance, and kept hard upon me. Having these Impressions on my Spirit, I was almost overwhelmed, and in mine own apprehension upon the Borders of Hell, where the Lord made me to behold the Execution of his wrath upon sinners: I could then have told what hel was, I felt the flashings of helfire in my soule, the wrath of God that lay hard upon me, the effects whereof were very terrible, B5r 15 terrible, insomuch as I was even swallowed up, only the Lord was pleased to keep me following after him, resolving to lie at his feet, though he should spurne me to hell. Having thus been under a sentence of death with the very terrors of hell in my soule, providence so ordering it, I came (by following the people) where Mr. Ford preached. I no sooner came into the Congregation, but I was so exceedingly troubled, as that I vented my selfe in Passionate teares; fearing lest I might be unfit to hear, but in prayer recovered my selfe. His text was in John 16: last. Be of good cheere, I have overcome the world. He instanced in all the enemies of the new creature, the World, the God of this world, Sin, Death, and Hell: the Lord setting it home every sentence was to me as the rivetting of the nailes, set on by the great master of Assemblies, and in prayer afterward (the Lord so providing) those very particulars which were the burden of my soule, were put up unto God. I went out of the congregation with another frame of spirit then when I came in, blessing the Lord for giving his Son Jesus Christ, who hath loved us, and washed us from our sins in his own blood, and hath made us Kings and Priests unto God. But afterwards I began to question whether I had not taken that, which did not belong unto me, Christ then B5v 16 then speaking comfort to his disciples in reference to that hardship they were to meet with in the world; among the rest of their sufferings this was one, that they should be put out of the Synagogues, yea the time would come that whosoever killed them, would think he did God good service, which things Christ told them that they might not be offended: But yet the Sermon being in generall of all the Enemies of the new Creature, I could not put it off. Furthermore the appearance of God was so remarkable in the change of my spirit, as that I could not but take it home, that Sins of the right hand and left hand, and separation also, and death and hell should be cast into the lake that burneth with fire and brimstone, that in the meane time Christ hath overcome the world, the Prince of this world is judged, condemned already, only the execution is deferred till the time appointed by the father. And as for sufferings, that we must look for them, having such provision so remarkably laid in before, I cannot but take notice of it at present. But then I could not conceive how it was likely for me to suffer in that kind, there being then so much love pretended. But now the time is come, and therefore I mention it: Christ saieth, these things have I spoken unto you, that when the time shall come, you may remember that I told you of them. Now I can make B6r 17 make application of all the Sermon which is food for my faith to live upon, although I suffer as an evill doer. I mention it with admiration, that the Lord even then when he spake peace unto me after my being convinced of Separation, should lay also provision against Excommunication.

But now after my conviction of Separation, it troubled me very much, because I knew not how to avoid it: my fear was lest I should be constrained to live in it, had I presently come off, I should have made a breach there. They pretended so much love unto me, as I knew not which way to break this bond, which the Apostle calls the bond of perfectnesse; wherefore I resolved to wait upon the Lord, for the opening a way unto me, which he did afterwards in manner following.

The Lord was making such abundant Provision for me in Mr. Ford’s ministry, I did constantly attend thereon, hearing him once a Lords day for the most part, unlesse it were when we had the Sacrament of the Lords Supper administred among us. This was my practice ever since he came to this City, of which Mr. Stucley took no great notice before he was in office; but afterward both he and the people were displeased with me for it, on which began the quarrell on my part between us. Mr. Stoneham being a stranger was employed to B6v 18 to take me off from this practice, who at first pretended that it did very much trouble him, but since he hath told me that he wished that he had never been put upon it.

He sent a Messenger unto me to perswade me to leave Mr. Ford’s ministry: I then shewed my grounds for that practice, what provision I found there, and how the Lord had made that ministry effectuall unto me, and withall that when I came among them, I took up a resolution to attend upon that ministry.

The same day in a publique meeting they accused me first of Contention, and secondly for my hearing Mr. Ford, which (as the Elder said) the Church neither could nor would bear, however they would not medle with it for that time.

As to the Article of Contention I appealed to the Church, and charged them to be faithfull as they would answer it another day, in making it known whether they had found me Contentious.

Upon which, I having withdrawn my selfe, they entred into a debate about it, every one declaring their thoughts of me: the result of which debate was this.

That they neither could nor would charge me with contention for a world, but did fear that through a mixture of Corruption it might tend to contention. This businesse was ended three B7r 19 three daies after, they declaring that they were satisfied.

But as to the other Article the Elder told me the very next day, when I pressed him to declare whether he knew of any thing against mee, he told mee that there was nothing else in the world but my hearing Master Forde, and then desired me to leave off that practise; which I did sometimes to content them, but the little peace that I found in it, made me quickly to take it up againe.

After this messengers were sent unto me severall times from the Church, to informe me how my practice was disliked by some, to whom I gave my reasons for it as formerly, and told them farther, that I was engaged to study the mind of Christ; and because of their dis-satisfaction, to seeke the Lord in this thing, I promised likewise to submit my selfe to the Officers, so as to be accountable to them of my hearing Mr Forde. I informed them also, how the Lord had made use of that Ministry for my good in these times of distraction, I gave thēem thanks for the great love, & good will they seemed to bear towards me, but withall desired thēem not to be offended if I made use of my Christian liberty till I was better informed, and told them where the Carkasse is, there will the Eagles resort.

Master Stucley also sent me two long letters, wherein he endeavored to perswade me to have dependance B7v 20 dependance only on their ministry without hearing any other.

But when they saw that I could not be taken off from this practice, they began to quarrell with me, telling me that I was contentious, that it was heighth of spirit, and so by little and little estranged themselves. But the Word was a light unto me, and so evident, as if it had been appointed on purpose for direction, they themselves being judges, insomuch as some of them asked me whether I did not use to visit Mr. Ford.

As for Mr. Stoneham he declared in his publique ministry oftentimes, That it was out of the way of order to hear any other minister, when our own officers preached, that no blessing was to be expected in such a way, and if so be there were any profit received, it was a delusion, a temptation, yea a judgment of God upon such a soule; it was a going out of the bosome of Christ into the bosome of strangers; Rebellion against Christ, and that such must be dealt with as Traytors and Rebells.

At length a fast, a day of humiliation was appointed for the disorderly walking of some, and that with obstinacy in the generall.

Hereupon I went unto Mr. Stoneham to know for what end this fast was intended, whether it was in reference to my selfe; if so, I should remove the occasion, resolving with my B8r 21 my selfe, if the liberty of hearing other ministers were denied me, to leave them. But he and Mr. Stucley whom I found with him, in stead of informing me fell into a dispute about true Churches, a subject that I was unskilfull in, and he by reason of his deafnesse unfit to treat of, and whithall let fall some strange Expressions concerning the people of God. I told him that I did delight in the image of God where ever I found it, in those that were the Excellent of the Earth, that did excell in virtue: he then endeavoured to perswade me that I was to have my affections tyed up to those of their Society, alleadging that I might aswell delight in another man that was not my husband, because the Image of God shined more in him then in my husbāand. I being troubled at this grosse discourse told him that those relations were of a different nature, and that I thought I did owe more duty where God in his Providence had cast me, and where I had the opportunity and ability to performe it, then I was engaged unto or could discharge unto others, where I had no such opportunities: yet I did not look upon it as that which could cut off my affections from the people of God, from those who had the Image of God renewed in them. Something also was spoken of Church ordinances, Mr. Stucley said the preaching of the word was not a Church ordinance, becausecause B8v 22 cause that it might be preached by one that was not a Church officer, and it might be used out of a Church, even in a family. For my own part I knew not how to understand these distinctions, but accounted them strange doctrines.

Mr. Stucley some dayes after in a letter taxed me for acknowledging an assembly of people to be a Church meeting, and the wednesday meeting to be a Church meeting which formerly I lookt upon as Babylon. To which I returned Answer by letter, that I accounted those from whom we did separate a true Church, as he had told me the New England ministers did; that I lookt upon the wednesdaies meeting to be a Church meeting, the Ministers as ambassadors of Christ, the preaching of the word a Church ordinance, that which Christ hath appointed for the gathering in, building up, and edifying of his body, which is the Church, that I did put no difference between hearing there and among our selves in point of efficacy, and that my separation from them was not in doctrine and worship, but in discipline. Much I wrote likewise for the removing of some prejudices, complaining how I was preached against, and prayed against; informing him likewise that I was neither able to live in the fire of contention, nor sit down under a ministry that I could not profit by, and therefore C1r 23 therfore should willingly withdrawe from them, I also desired him that whilest wee contended for pure ordinances we should not suffer the Gospell to be corrupted, and that I feared we did not walke up to our owne principles, and I likewise desired direction from him.

When the day appointed for the fast was come, I went to the meeting not knowing for what it was intended, The practice of the hearing of other ministers was then made to be as the Sin of Korah and Dathan And betweene the severall prayers Mr Stonehāam propounded somewhat by way of question, how to know an heriticke: one discovery was when persons went against their owne principles as those did, who although they have given up themselves on unto another shall notwithstanding say they delight in the Image of God where ever they finde it, in the Excellent ones of the earth, which was contrary to their principles and destructive to the very fundementalls of the Church.

This being contrary in my apprehension to that of the Apostle. 2 Col, where he tels us. That he had greate conflict. not for them only which he knew, But also for as many (of the Saints) as had not seene his face in the flesh, And in Chap: 1. 4. where he commends them for their love to all the Saints, I did in the conclusion tell some of thēem privately, There was that deliver’d which could not be prov’d by the word.

C The C1v 24

The Sacrament of the Lords Supper had beene about this time omitted for neer halfe a yeare, sure I am it was very long, I enquired of some the reason thereof, who told me because I could not sit downe with Master Stoneham’s ministry, whereupon I went to Master Stoneham to know the reason why the Sacrament was kept from us, at the first he gave me no answer, but when I was earnest with him to give me satisfaction, he said, that he did not know what use I would make of it: I then told him, hee looked upon me as under a temptation, when I was in an ordinance of Jesus Christ; but I had cause to feare that he was under a temptation, in neglecting such an ordinance of Jesus Christ, which he had a command often to make use of; and then intreated him that if he thought me unworthy to partake of it, that I onely might be kept off, that the ordinance might not (upon that account) be laid aside: to this he replied, that the prayers they had put up, would be answered, which was all the satisfaction I could get from him at that time: A weeke after I pressed him againe for the Sacrament, he then told me, that if I would not sit downe under his ministry he would be no officer unto mee, and for a close told mee, there was one who had somewhat against mee: whereupon the same day I went to Master Stucley to know what it was that some body had against mee, what the evill was C2r 25 was they could charge me with, I told him that it was my desire and endeavour to keep a good conscience void of offence both towards God and towards men: that if there were any evill with which they could charge mee, upon information what it was, I would not continue in the practice thereof, and therefore desired him to tell mee what it was, that one had against mee: to which Master Stoneham, then being at Master Stucleys house, answered, that I must first resolve to sit down under their ministry, and then they would conferre about that: I replyed that I did not separate, but in distinguishing ordinances, unto which this answer was returned, that there was as much reason for a woman to goe after another man, because of fruitfulnesse, as to make use of another Ministry because of more benefit. At which grosse discovery of themselves I resolved with my selfe to take my leave of them: Master Stucley at my going forth came with mee to the doore, and then desired me to deny my selfe-holinesse for God, and look for a reward in heaven: This was the last time that ever I was in his house.

After this two or three times I went to Mr. Eveleigh the Elder, to know what it was they had against me; but I could never speak with him, untill I met him at the meeting, where I desired to speak with him, and went to his house, and desired him to informe me, what C2 they C2v 26 they had to Charge mee with, who insteed of answering directly to my question sayd, there would bee a Sacrament the next Lords day, which (as I remember) was putt of, and that some body did desire mee to forbeare, my Answer was, that I should not give offence to any; he then told mee what a doe they had to please mee, instancing in his wife, dead and buried long before.

This being all I could learne of him, I went about to severall persons (att their houses) to know what it was that they had against mee, but they told mee there was nothinge but my goeing to heare others, then I asked whether the Church had any thinge against mee, they did assure mee the Church had nothing against mee, Having done this, I beheld the doore standing so wide open, as that I might fairely take my leave, which yet I did not, before I had for a while seriously and sadly considered of these following particulars.

1. The strangenesse of their opinions and practises in reference to the ordinances of Jesus Christ: Preaching was affirmed to be no Church Ordinance, as also Catechizing.

The ordinance of Fasting exceedingly perverted, in which they walked in the wayes of Ahab, and statutes of Omry, Making it like Ismaels weeping to fall on poore soules, when they go to worship the Lord, like the tumultuousous C3r 27 ous concourse of people, Act. 19. 32. by concealing the perticular occasions and ends of their fastings, fasting rather for strife and debate, then to keepe the unity of the spirit in the bond of peace with Gods people.

The Sacrament of the Lords Supper was for a long time detained, not only from my selfe in particular without giving any reason, but from the whole Congregation in generall, new, and unheard of, and unscripturall qualifications were required of those who would pertake thereof: They must subscribe and engage not to heare any, but their owne Officers at such times as the Officers did preach, and must believe that a greater blessing was to be expected on their Ministry, then on the Ministry of others, when (as the Apostle saith) He that planteth, and he that watereth are all one, I Cor. 3.7,8. To come out from among them upon this account I was very much encouraged by Master Burroughs, who in his heart divisions, p. 174. sayeth, If Governors enjoyne any thing uppon the Church, or any member thereof that is Sin, or if they shall mingle Evill in the Publique worship, so that there can be noe Joyning with their worship, but there must be Joyning likewise with their Sin: In this case they are the Schismaticks, not those who withdrawe from them.

Yea farther If they impose that, which is not necessary though in it selfe not sinful, and will not C3 beare C3v 28 beare with the weaknes of such as thinke it Evill: If upon that, they are forced to withdrawe, in this the governors are the Schismaticks; the cause of the Rent is in them, they ought in such things to beare with the weaknesses of their brethren, and not imperiously require of them those things of which there is no necessity, if such things be Sinne to their Brethrens consciences, if they will stand upon it to enjoyne them, they lay a necessity on them to withdraw. God will not lay the Indictment of Schisme thus; such a one departed from the Communion of such a church, because he would not doe what was lawfull to be done, But thus,――you imposed that upon your brother, which there was no necessity of, and would not forbeare him in what I would have you to forbeare him, but caused him by your imperiousnesse, and stifnesse to depart from communion with you. It’s true, God saith, the things might have been done, but it was not necessary, it was out of conscience to me that they forbore, the weaknesse is theirs; but the Schisme is yours.

2. From the ordinances I turned my thoughts unto the Churches, both that from which I had separated, as also that whereof I was then a member, as to the Churches of England, I considered that they were right in respect of Doctrine and worship; and not onely so, but that they were united likewise by an implicit covenant, which upon enquiry that they of New- C4r 29 New-England make to be the same for substance with that which is explicit, contrarie to what I believed at the first (viz.) That an Explicit Covenant was necessary to the Constituting of a visible Church, and therefore upon this account, there was no reason to separate from them: I considered that the work of this generation was not the Constituting, but the reforming of Churches, which I conceived separation did hinder. It made my heart bleed within me to think that I should have a hand in the hindering of Reformation, for which so much precious blood had been spilt in the late Warre.

As to the Church whereof I was then a member, I feared what it would come to in the end, there being in so short a time, such a visible difference between out first Ingagements, and the present state thereof. At the first, liberty of conscience and freedome from the Intolerable yoke of being Servants unto men was pretended; But now we were in greater bondage then ever, all liberty of dissenting from them being denyed. Our officers were swayed by such a Prelaticall Spirit, as that every one must rest satisfied with their determinations, otherwise it would be lookt upon as a non-conformity, contention, and the Lords Supper forthwith denyed them.

C4 At C4v 30

At the first we were not to rest in the light we had allready received, but engaged to study the minde and will of God, and live up unto it, to have Christ for our Judge, our Lawgiver and King; but now the voice of the Church (two or three of them) carries all before it, he that did not hearken unto this, he that was not obedient unto this, must be presently accounted contentious, censorious, a Rebell against Jesus Christ, and dealt withall as such. When I demanded, whether that which they said to be the voice of the Church, were the voice of Christ?

Answer was returned, that the voice of the Church, was the voice of Christ.

If this be true, then we must believe as the Church believes, we must believe that the Church cannot erre, contrary to that in Rev. 3. where we read that the Church of Laodicea said one thing, and Christ another, where every one is commanded to heare what the spirit saith unto the Churches.

And as for the people; the generalitie of them I plainly perceived that they made it their businesse to study conformity, without the least heeding what they had formerly engaged, or enquiring what, for the time to come this might grow unto; Isacher-like they bowed their shoulders to beare, and became Servants unto whatsoever tribute was imposed.

In C5r 31

In the last place I took a briefe view of their behaviour abroad in the world—where they were striving who should be foremost in getting of offices and places of profit; so imployed they were in enriching themselves, and building their own houses; as that they little minded the house of God. And as for Mr Stucley, he was so entangled with the world as that it took up a great part of his time every week, which should have been spent in the worke of the ministry, contrary to that of the Apostle, 2 Tim. 2.4. So troubled he was about many things, as that he very much neglected that one thing needfull, the feeding of the flock,――He seemed to me to be led captive by ambition and covetousnesse, which made him more crafty and politick then could (in my Judgment) stand with the Simplicity of the Gospell: So that I questioned whether or no, he had not applied himselfe to the studie of wisedome, onely for her left hand blessings of riches and honor.

I cald to mind his subtilty in the manageing of many busienesses, his setting Mr Stonham a worke about that which he durst not appeare in himselfe; but especially his trecherousnesse and deceitfull dealing in useing means for the opening reading and Coppying of postletters; the letters of the chiefe magestrate of this Citty, this I was enformed of by one of their members, and since hath been confirmed by others; And C5v 32 And his appointing a day of thanksgiving for the Succesfulnesse of his designes furthered by such unlawfull meanes; whether this were not a bringing of Thanksgiving with leaven, I leave it to others to Judge. I could not but withdraw from that thanksgiving: I considered with my selfe, how unlike it was that he should be a faithfull minister of Christ, who dealt so unfaithfully with men, and therefore that it could not be safe for me to continue any longer under his pastorall charge; especially seeing I could not be faithfull to them, because of their crafty seeking advantages to ensnare: All the remedy I had left was to withdrawe from them.

Thus being convinced of Separation and the evill thereof, and having pondred a while of their Unchristian or rather Antichristian practises, I went on the 1654-03-2424 of March 1654. to Mr Eveleigh the Elder, whom I desired to acquaint the Church, that I should continue no longer with them, for severall reasons which I then gave him; And that I would willingly (if they desired it) give them farther Satisfaction; he replyed that there was nothing but would be made up: I know that very well, said I, but for severall reasons I am resolved to withdraw from your society.

About foureteen daies after, (being sent for) I went to their meeting according to my promise,mise, C6r 33 mise, supposing they would require an account of my leaving of them; but Mr Stucley altogether waved that, and insteed thereof having questioned me a little concerning Mr Stoneham, demanded how long I had used to heare Mr Ford; I answered a year at the least, the truth of which assertion when he seemed to question, I added farther that my writing books would make it appeare that I had heard him much longer.

Then he asked me concerning Mris Eveleigh, whether I did not speak against her?

To this I returned Answer; (1) by asking him whether he did not say to Mr Eveleigh in his own house within a few daies after that she was admitted, that I was so farre from speaking against her, as that I had spoken for her, and therefore would cleare me.

To this he answered never a word, but was silent (1ly) by acknowledging that I had Spoken against her, but not to have her kept off, as Mr Eveleigh had charged me.

Why did you then Speake against her, said Mr Stucley?

I answered because she had gone contrary to the law of Charity, in that she did partake of the ordinance of the lords Supper with the Presbyterians, which we did not: If she looked on this as her duty, she could not but looke on the neglect thereof, as our Sin, and so she walked uncharitably: she being in Societie with us, and not admonishing C6v 34 admonishing us of our neglect; in suffering Sin uppon us.

To this Mr Stucley replyed, what that lawe of Charitie was (for his part) he knew not, he knew noe such law, Mr Roles said It was a word hastily spoken, and so it might be taken.

After this Mr. Stucley asked me, how I could go amon the Presbyterians.

To this I answered, that I looked on it as my dutie to wait upon God amongst a professing, reforming people.

And then he told me, how that in my letter unto him, I had acknowledged that for a true Church, which I had formerly called Babylon.

To this I answered, that I had called to mind so much as I could against my selfe, as to that particular of Babylon, and so far as I could remember any such expressions, I did acknowledge my evill therein, for which I had cause to be humbled: aund withall that I did not separate as from Babylon; that I looked upon them from whom we separated as true Churches in doctrine and worship, that I did not separate from either of these, but only from their discipline: that the chiefe ground of my separation was a Mistake, I supposing that a Church rightly constituted must be joined together by an Explicite Covenant, which I found to be otherwise now.

Iwas likewise questioned for opposing in a C7r 35 a publique meeting Mr. Stucley, as to his being Pastor at that time, when they chose him to be the Pastor, and that in such a Contentious manner, as to cause an hower and halfe debate in the meeting. Mr. Whitehorne sent them a paper, wherein he profered to affirme with oath this charge.

Which being denied by me, because I knew I was not present at the meeting at that time; Mr. Role and Mr. Slade said they did believe that Mr. Whithorne was mistaken (or to that effect) and Mr. Sprague expressely affirmed, that it was otherwise then Mr. Whithorne had written, for (said he) we did agree to conceale that meeting from her, lest she should oppose him.

I asked Mr. Roles and Mr. Slade where ever they knew me oppose Mr. Stucley in a publique meeting? They said no, they never knew it.

Thus after they had spent some time in such Cavills, Mr. Stucley said to me, you are accused of a slip of your Tongue, of an Untruth.

To which I replied, that this was a new thing, and desired to know what ground he had for it.

He answered here is Testimony, here are they who will witnesse.

I told him my witnesse might be taken as soon as theirs, and had been formerly before theirs.

Mr. C7v 36

Mr. Rols then turning himselfe towards Mr. Stucley, said, that he believed there was never an untruth spoken, and it being things long before, and that every one spake as they remembred: and farther said, that he wondred he made so much adoe about nothing.

To which Mr. Stucley replied, here is a negative and an affirmative, and therefore a lye; although he never examined where the lye was.

At the conclusion I told them that I should come no more among them.

This is the Substance of what I can remember concerning this daies discourse, it being more then three yeares since. Whereby it appeares that I have just cause to charge the lye on themselves.

A few daies after they sent for me againe, but I told the messenger, seeing they had so grossely abused me, as to charge a lye upon me, I would come no more among them: that they were a people not to be trusted, and that I would be drawn in sunder by wild horses rather then go unto them.

However the same day I sent unto Mr. Slade, one of the Officers, to know what they would have of me, who told me that they were very much troubled at my leaving them, and that they would look on my Returne as a Resurrection mercy.

I C8r 37

I desired him to returne this as my answer unto them, viz. Let them study the Word, and convince me from the Word what is my dutie in such a Case, and I would gladly receive it, and willingly submit to it, so unwilling was I to offend them, yet to come any more among them I durst not, because of their former Carriage, neither was it (as I conceived) safe for me to adventure singly and without witnesse among them, who were my accusers, witnesses, and judges. Since that day of the meeting abovesaid I never spake with Mr. Stucley, though I desired it severall times.

Some daies after Mr. Eveleigh and Mr. Slade Officers, and a member with them came unto me, and (as they said) expected Mr. Stucley’s comeing likewise, but he came not.

I then complained of their Carriage towards me, telling them how much I was troubled at it, and desired them also to shew me from the word what they could expect, and then I should submit.

One of them replied you must returne, and do otherwise, I answered, that I had too much to do with Separation already, and therefore should not returne; then said one of them, then they will never be satisfied.

As for Mr. Eveleigh he told me, that my going away should cost me dearer then my coming in; and that they would proceed accordingding C8v 38 ding to the order of the Churches: this was heard by another.

I answered, whatever I suffered by them, could not be so much as had suffered for them.

After this others came to me, I told them I did expect to speak with Mr. Stucley, that I might know what he had against me, and that I was ready to submit to the word, that they should convince me thereby how I ought to be affected.

Mris Roles also came unto me in way of a visit, who desired me to consider what a dishonour it would be unto the Church, if I left them: and as for what you have at any time spoke unto them (said she) I believe it was in the uprightnesse of your heart, and so doth my husband.

I told her that I did not justify my selfe in every particular as to the manner of it, said she, you spoile all in saying you will leave them, and if you do so, what will they say of my Cozen Stucley? and what will they say of us? consider, we are rising, and more will come into us continually.

And after this Mris. Stoneham came unto me, asking with teares in her eies, whether I would not returne, and whether she was the cause of my going away.

I demanded of her whether Mr. Stoneham knew of her coming? She answered, that she did D1r 39 did not see him at her coming away. I then told her that it was reported by some of them, that they could not partake with me in ordinances now.

For my part (said she) I was never of that mind, neither do I know any who are, but on the contrary we are all much troubled that you will leave us.

About two months after, Ezekiel Pace was sent from Mr. Eveleigh, to tell me that I was suspended by the Church.

I told him that I had left their Society, and that I had no communion with them.

He answered, they conceived that they could not otherwise discharge their dutie unto me, and as for what they had done, it was in order to my return.

I replyed that my purpose was never to returne unto them.

After I had made my Addresse to the Ministers of the City, desiring to be admitted into fellowship and communion with them in ordinances. Mr. Stucley understanding thereof sent Mr. Eveleigh unto Mr. John Bartlet Minister, to give him notice that they had severall things against me: upon which it was by Mr. Bartlet desired that they would produce their charge, which they promised to do, although it was long first, yet at length (after often desiring of it) a meeting was appointed at Mr. Fords D house D1v 40 house the Minister: Between Mr. Ford and Mr. Bartlet on the one side, and Mr. Stucley and Mr. Eveleigh on the other. At which meeting I was present, there they did declare what they had against me, concerning Mris Eveleigh and Babylon, where they charged me with an untruth. And the result of this conference was this, the Articles wherewith they charged me, being after serious Examination by all the ministers of the City found partly doubtfull and proofelesse, and partly frivolous, I was shortly after (according as I desired) received into Communion with them; and so continued neer three yeares, till Mr. Stucley’s Cursing began to make a noise in the world, which was neer three yeares after I deserted them.

Neer three years after my leaving of them, Mr. Eveleigh acquainted me with a fast in order to their Excommunication. I then desired that the businesse might be brought to a new triall before the ministers, whom they had acquainted with it formerly, and with whom I was in Communion, without whose advice I would do nothing.

But this was not hearkned unto, they being (it seemes) resolved on their worke of Excommunication, how causelesse and unjust soever.

Let that letter that Mris. Allen and my selfe jointly subscribed and sent to Mr. Stucley to be communicated to the Church, stand as a vvitnesse D2r 41 witnesse between us and them, to testifie to all the world how unjustly they charge us with Contumacy and refusing of Admonition, whereby it evidently appeares that we honoured them so far as to receive their Summons, and to return them our Answer, wherein we did

1 Desire a fair triall between them and us before understanding and impartiall mren.

2 We did professe our desire to submit to the law and will of Christ, when we should see reason from Scripture to Convince.

3 We did in the generall professe our Repentance for those Evills that we knew our selves guilty of.

Thus far we condescended to them. And let the impartiall Reader judge what they could expect more from us, who had upon Conscientious principles withdrawne from communion with them, as Master Allen hath already declared of his wife; and my selfe having deserted them neere three yeares before (being convinced of the groundlesnesse of separation for severall particulars I declared to the Elder; & the cause of my withdrawing being not removed; but more offence being still given by them, how could I acknowledge them so as to put my selfe upon their tryall. Besides how could wee with safety put our selves on their triall, who were enraged with us since we left them; which they discovered by their Calumniating and defaming of us.

D2 Be- D2v 42

Besides we having been in fellowship with the Lords people in other congregations; my selfe severall yeares, and Mris. Allen for some time, we being so aspersed by them as we were, how could we cleer our selves, so as to satisfie them that we were in Communion with (without a tryall) so as that they might not suffer by us; for what we were aspersed with, did in some manner reflect upon them, who had received us into fellowship with them.

And whereas Mr. Stucley in his book Intituled (Manifest Truth) pag. 22. pretends that it robbes particular Churches of that power and authority which Christ hath intrusted them with, of Trying and censuring their own delinquent members &c.

Resol.Resolution This is nothing to the purpose, we were not their members, but reall members of some other congregations. If they have power to censure their own delinquent members, we doe not hinder them from exercising their power. But have they therefore power to Censure the members of other Churches? we had withdrawen from Communion with them, and they having not satisfied us so as to remove the occasion of our leaving them.

May he not therefore reflect upon himselfe, who hath contrary to his own professed principles robbed the Church of their power, and of their members in Censuring of us, without the Ap- D3r 43 Approbation of those ministers and congregations to which we stood related? May we not therefore aske him, who gave you this Authority of lording it over Churches and their members without their Counsell or consent? Is not this practice of his too mcuh like those that the Apostle foretells of Acts 20. 2429. For I know this that after my departure shall grievous wolves enter in among you, not sparing the flock, and our Saviour tells us there are wolves in sheeps-cloathing, ye shall know them by their fruits, Matth, 7. 15, 16. Besides, let it be considered, in denying of us this liberty to have a fair Triall, hath he not hereby denyed Communion of Churches, he being since desired severall times by severall ministers of the City, that the businesse might be brought to a Triall, they judging it unreasonable that we should be excommunicated by them, untill the cause be clearly proved, and we be permitted to Answer for our selves. But this he hath evaded for severall months, and in stead thereof takes liberty to preach and print what he pleaseth of us, that so he may render our names and persons odious to them that know us not.

And for farther Answer to him in that he pretends that it robs the Church of the power that Christ hath given &c. It being a point of controversie I shall leave it to the learned. Let him consult the Judgments of those that are D3 for D3v 44 for the Congregationall way.

The Apologeticall Narration presented to the house of Parliament, and subscribed by T.G. P.N. S.S. I.B. W.B. in answer to this objection, viz. That is such a congregationall governm ēent, thus entire within it selfe, there is not allowed sufficient Remedy for miscarriages or wrongfull sentences, or persons injured thereby, no Room for complaints, no powerfull or effectuall means to reduce a Church or Churches that fall into heresie, or schisme; but every one is left, and may take liberty, without controle to do what is good in their owne eyes.

Pag. 14. We could not but judge it a safe, & an allowed way to retaine the Government of our severall Congregations for matter of discipline within themselves, &c. yet not claiming to our selves an independent power in every Congregation, to give account, or be subject to none others, but onely a full and entire power compleat within our selves, untill we should be challenged to erre grosly: such as Corporations enjoy, who have the power and priviledge to passe sentence for life and death within themselves, and yet are accountable to the State they live in.

Pag. 16. An instance they give of their owne practice in a businesse of this nature of Excommunication, wherewith some Churches were offended.

In D4r 45

In this Case our Churches did mutually and universally acknowledge and submit to this as a Sacred and undoubted Principle and supreme Law to be observed among all Churches. That as by vertue of that Apostolicall Command, Churches as well as particular men are bound to give no offence, neither to Jew or Gentile, nor the Churches of God they live amongst: so that in all cases of such offences or difference, by the obligation of the common law of Communion of Churches, and for the vindication of the glory of Christ, which in common they hold forth, the Church or Churches challenged to offend or differ are to submit themselves, upon the challenge of the offence or complaint of the person wronged, to the most full and open triall and examination by other neighbour churches offended thereat, of what ever hath given the offence. And farther that by vertue of the same and like law of not partaking of other mens sins, the Churches offended may & ought (upon the Impenitency of those Churches persisting in their error and miscarriage) to pronounce that heavy sentence against them of withdrawing and renouncing all Christian Communion with them, untill they do repent. And farther, to declare and protest this, with the causes thereof to all other Churches of Christ that they might do the like.

D4 Pag. D4v 46

Pag. 21. It was openly and publiquely professed in a speech, that was the Preface to that discussion, to this effect. That it was the most abhorred Maxime that any Religion hath ever made Profession of, and therefore of all other the most contradictory and dishonourable unto that of Christianity, That a single and particular Society within themselves should farther arrogate unto themselves an Exemption from giveing account, or being Censureable by any other, either Christian magistrate above them; or neighbour Churches about them. So farr (say they) were our Judgements, from that Independent liberty, that is imputed to us.

So Mr Borroughs, heart division p. 43. where he sayes, Those in the Congregationall way acknowledge that they are bound in conscience, to give account of their wayes to the Churches about them, or to any other who shall require it, this, not in an Arbitrary way, but as a duty they owe to God and man.

Reader, here you see how wide and dissonant, the judgements of those (more) learned of the Congregationall way are from the practice and proceedings of Mr Stucley & his Church: Those of that way acknowledging, but hee denying, submission to any examination, or triall by neighbour Churches, and hee and his Church claiming an Independent power, or liberty to give D5r 47 give no account, or be subject to no others, though accused and challenged for erring grosly in point of their Arbitrary unjust proceedings against us, which is plainly manifested in Master Allen’s booke called (Truths manifest revived) and will farther appeare in my ensuing Vindication, to which I hasten; This being (to my best remembrance) a true Relation of what passed between us, untill the Excommunication.

The Vindication.

By that which hath been said in my Narrative, it is manifest that I was never questioned, much lesse admonished for lying, untill my coming off from them, that they D5v 48 they never accounted me (whiles I was with them) such a vile person as now by their slanderous pamphlets they endeavour to make the world believe me to be: and here I cannot but wonder at Mr Mall, that he, being a stranger to me, and altogether ignorant of my manner of life and conversation, should yet be so rash and inconsiderate, as meerly upon reports to defame me in Print, for which he is bound in conscience as he is a Minister (if he be one) a Christian, yea, as he is a man, to give the Church of God, mee, and the world, satisfaction.

The Notes, (saith he in his Epistle to the Reader) of Mr Stucleys Sermon, I am glad I took in short hand from his mouth, or otherwise thou mightest never have seen a true Copy of them.

Surely, if the Copy do agree with the Originall, (which some question) I shall be so bold to affirme of both that they exceedingly disagree with the Truth, in laying those Crimes to my charge which they are never able to prove, as will sufficiently (I beleive) appeare in these my following Answers to their Severall Articles.

I shall begin with that of lying, it being that which my accuser begins and almost ends with, which he in many places of his book mentions with a great deale of pretended zeale and indignation, which he indeavours to equall with the sin of Incest, which he saith is a fault detestable to the very heathens. Some of them, this is the D6r 49 the Cryme which he and his party especially charge me with both in Citie and Country, crying out every where, I am a lyar, yea an egregious one, and therefore justly Excommunicated, This is in fine, the Article on which the whole charge depends.

Before I come to the Charge it selfe in particular, I shall crave leave to speake something in the generall concerning the apprehension I have of this Sin, as also somewhat concerning Master Stucleys practice in reference unto it, whereby it will be evident, both how improbable it is that I should be such an Egregious lyer, as hee hath made mee in his booke, and also how unlikely it is, that hee should be so zealously affected against lying as he therein pretends.

For the first of these. Lying is that Sin, which my Parents from time to time, so represented unto me in the severall aggravations and deformities thereof, as that I alwaies (since I came to yeares of discretion) abhorred, and detested it, both in my selfe and others.

I account a lyar unfit not onely for Christian Communion, but also civill Commerce.

From the word, and my own sadd experience I finde it to be an hereditary evill in all the sons and daughters of Adam: That the heart is deceitfull and desperately wicked above all things, who can know it? That there is a way of D6v 50 of lying in the best of men by nature, in this sense, let God be true, and every man a lyer. The guile, deceipt, falshood, and hypocrisy which is in the heart, is that which is a chiefe part and member of the bodie of death, and that which makes it out of measure sinfull, and an intollerable burthen to be borne.

As to the practice of this sin, I do believe that it is not consistent with the worke of grace, That he which lives in the practice thereof, is not a member of Christ but a limbe of the divell, it is so contrary to the God of truth, so contrarie unto Christ, who is the Truth, and so contrarie unto the Spirit of Truth, and so contrary unto the work of Regeneration, as I cannot believe that such a soule as lives in the practice thereof, or hath slight thoughts of it, was ever begotten againe by the word of Truth, neither is it (I conceive) possible for such a one to enjoy comfortable communion with God.

I looke on it as a distinguishing Character, whereby the Children of God are known from the children of the divel, The Remnant of Israel shall not doe iniquity, nor speak lies, neither shall a deceitfull tongue be found in their mouthes. Lyers are excluded from the New Jerusalem, that cometh down from God out of heaven, whosoever loveth and maketh a lie is in the number of those who are without: The hundred fortie and four thousand that stand with the D7r 51 the Lambe on Mount Sion, having his fathers name written on their foreheads, which follow the lambe wheresoever he goeth, which were redeemed frōom among men, being the first-fruits unto God and to the lambe, in their mouth was found no Guile.

I hope through grace in some measure I can say, That I have seen such a desireable beauty in Truth, as with David to hate and abhorre lying, & whatsoever is contrary unto truth, guile, deceit, hypocrisie, falshood, a false heart, false wayes, false doctrines, though under never so faire pretences, when once they are throughly discovered.

And as to my practice, as I desire to lay aside every weight that presseth down, and the Sin that doth so easily beset me, So is it my endeavour in all my approaches unto the Throne of Grace, the word & ordinances, to obtain strength for the purging out more & more of the Guile, hypocrisie, falshood, and deceit that is in my heart, and is still discovering it selfe before the Lord, and ready to break out on all occasions, which doth continually administer matter of lamentation unto me.

And because I find by sad experience that this body of death doth not lie idle, but is still bringing forth fruit unto death, and being not willing to rest in my own Testimony, considering often that of Solomon, he that trusteth D7v 52 trusteth his own heart is a fool: and fearing also lest through corruption I might forget the miscarriages laid to my charge (some yeares being expired ere ever I was questioned for them) or put them off, I did earnestly desire againe and again to speak with Mr. Stucley himselfe, that I might know his grounds in charging me with lying, but all to no purpose; he could not be spoken with.

And so also since the Excommunication did I write unto him to know the particulars whereof I am accused in reference to lying, that so I might accordingly either justifie or condemne my selfe. But he in stead of satisfying my just and reasonable demand, most imperiously and prelatically sends me a letter full of bitter Calumniations, accusing me to be a Contentious, dividing, and lying Spirit, without so much as naming any particulars.

As to the Second, I might referre the Reader for proof hereof to his practice. It will be found upon triall that he is not of Davids minde in Psal. 101. 7. to Banish from his house and sight, every one that worketh deceit and telleth lies; and though he pretend to banish mee (upon that account) from his society and fellowship, yet he never questioned me for lying, untill I departed from him, untill I sent him word that I would come no more among them.

When D8r 53

When he and Master Eveleigh accused me to Master Forde, and Master Bartlet of lying, Master Forde asked him whether he had ever admonished me for those things whereof he accused me, To which he answered that he had not been faithfull unto me, and that I had told him of it my selfe, And Master Eveleigh added, That they had much a doe to please me.

Had I continued with them I should, without doubt, notwithstanding all those lyes I am now accused of; have been as favorably dealt with, as two other of their members, who were notoriously guilty of lyeing.

As to the first of them, it was briefly thus; we having beene enjoyned Secresie by Mr Stucley, there was notwithstanding somewhat of our private Conferences divulged and made knowne.

Hereupon the next meeting every one was examined, and charged in a solemne manner to declare whether they knew who it was that had revealed it: To which a negative answer was returned by every one, and when I desired Master Stucley to search after it more narrowly, and presse it more closely upon them, that the Lyar might be found out, he put mee off with this, that it had beene so in another Church, and though he knew who it was afterward (as I am informed) yet the party was never admonished at any of our meetings.

Here was (to be sure) a negative and an affirmativefirma- D8v 54 firmative, a breach of promise, and then a denying of that which was fresh in memory and (which is more) the words spoken in prvitae betweene our selves were mis-reported, and yet Mr Stucley could quietly passe it over.

The other is John Whitehorne, who offered to affirme with oath, that which was by two or three of the members presently contradicted; and yet Mr Stucley hath beene so farre from admonishing him for it, as that I heare he is now become an Elder.

By all which it is more then probable, that there is little of truth to be expected in his lying charge, which he expresseth in these words.

Charge. As for Mris Parr she is accused amōong other things for lying more than three times sufficiently proved, in pag. 18. of his booke published by Mr Mall. But when she was under Church admonition concerning severall things, she was found tripping very much in reference to her Tongue, and lying egregiously, so that the whole Church could bear witness against her.

Resol: If this Charge be throughly sifted, it will be found faulty more wayes then one, and so egregiously tripping, and halting, as that every unbyassed Reader may witnesse against it. For,

1. It runs altogether in the generall, in affirming mee to be under Church admonition, for severall things, without naming any one: And when E1r 55 then in accuseing mee only of lying in generall, without instancing in so much as one particular, whereby others are possessed with a prejudice against mee, and my selfe disenabled to alleadge any thing in mine owne defence, not knowing how the particulars will be framed.

2. Secondly, it confidently asserts me guilty of lying more then three times sufficiently proved, and that so egregiously, as all the Church could witnesse against mee; when as one of their principall members declared (at that time when I was accused of Tripping) in their meeting that hee thought there was never an untruth spoken, but that every one spake as they remembred.

3. Thirdly and lastly, it sayes, I was under Church admonition for severall things.

What hee meaneth by Church admonition I scarce understand; if by Church admonition hee meanes that discourse which wee had together at the very time (being ten dayes after I left them, when as he saith, I was found tripping) I say it was no admonition (as I conceived) but onely an examination, as appeares in my Narrative. If he would insinuate thereby that I was under Church admonition before that time. Then I say it could be but for one thing onely which is omitted; neither is there any mention made of it throughout the whole booke; And that was my hearing Mr Forde.

E Its E1v 56

Its true Mr Stucley told me, my speaking was disrelished, whereupon I left that practice neere two yeares before I left them; Its true likewise that the Elder accused mee of contention, upon which I made my appeale unto the Church, who with one consent acquitted me of that charge,

The Elder also accused me of censoriousnes for opposing (Ganicle) who not longe after turned Quaker, and therby cleered me of that imputation; so that I could not be at this time, when as they say I lyed so egregiously, under church admonition for either of these,

And as for any other things I cannot remēember any that they did ever manifest the least dislike of, unlesse my practice of hearing Mr Forde, (which is the thing (not things) for which I was under Church admonition) the thing which hath occasioned all this trouble; and for which, (as Mr Stucley in a letter formerly threatned) they have proceeded to censure mee, though it be daubed over with lying & other forged crimes.

This practice of hearing Mr Forde was permitted mee, or at the least winked at by them, so long as I had a friend that might pleasure them in the City and in the Parliament—. Mr Stucley presently upon his being an Officer, told mee that he did expect I should heare him, and no other, to which I presently replyed, that it would be hard for mee to leave that Ministry which E2r 57 which the Lord had made so profitable unto mee, and withall gave him my grounds for that practice. At length at the close of our discourse, he said, we should not disagree about it, and yet afterwards Master Stoneham was put upon it to preach and pray against mee for this practice.

To take mee off from this practice also was Mr Sprague sent unto me, by Mr Stoneham: the very same day at the meeting the Elder told me, they had two things against me, one was Contention, the other my hearing Mr Forde, which the Church neither could nor would bear: the Elder the next day after the businesse of contention was ended, told mee that he had nothing against mee but my hearing Mr Forde.

Mr Slade also, and Mr Rolls came to mee as messengers from the Church (as they said) to admonish me in particular of hearing Mr Forde: Mr Stucley himselfe wrote me two long letters, about this very thing, & in one of them threatned to censure mee for it: they kept a fast for this very particular the 1654-02-2424. of February 1654.

They omitted the administration of the Lords Supper for this reason (as Mr Raddon told me) yea Mr Stoneham said, that if I would not fit downe under his Ministry, he would be no Officer unto mee.

When I was desired afterwards to forbeare coming to the Sacrament, without giving any other reason then this; That some body did E2 desire E2v 58 desire me to forbeare (who this somebody was I could never learne) I went forthwith to severall members, to know what they had against mee, who answered, they had nothing, but my going to heare others, which practice (they said) was destructive to the Church. By all which it is manifest that this was the onely thing they had against mee, untill I had left them, and yet this is omitted, and other things are pretended. Let all the world judge whether this be not Serpentine subtilty: As to this charge of (lying) I shall desire the Reader to consider farther these three or fower particulars.

1. The time when they found me Tripping, (as he saith) it was after I had left them. Before I had sent them word that I was resolved to withdraw from their Society I was never questioned for a lye: what doth this imply, but that they resolved my going off should cost mee dearer then my coming in among them, according to the Elder Mr Eveleighs threatning.

Again, it was at that time when I went to thēem in love, in the simplicity of my heart, to give them satisfaction why I left them, as I did at the first why I associated my selfe with them; thinking as little to be charged with lying, as with theft, murder, or other sins not to be named among Christians. And here I cannot but commend Mris Allen her discretion, in refusing to adventure her self singly among them, which had E3r 59 had she done, they would have made her as great a lyer, as my selfe, thereby Mr Stucley would have been freed from the trouble of framing two indifferent bills of indictment against us.

2. Secondly, the matters about which they examined me at that time were such as had been done and past long before, some yeares: so that if through weaknesse of memory, my tongue had tripped, how will it follow hence that I lyed so egregiously as to deserve Excommunication? How could they be sure that I made a lye, though I had spoken an untruth, unlesse they knew certainly, that I spake against my knowledge?

3. Thirdly, I did in my answers to their frivolous and cavilling questions insert by way of caution (viz.) as I remember: according to my best remembrance, &c. which might have satisfied them, as it did Mr Rolls at that time, had they not beene fully bent to slander mee for leaving them.

4. Fowerthly, I was onely accused, not convicted, of lying: Mr Stucley said, here are they who will witnesse, but yet they did not witnesse any particular, that I absolutely denied, except John Whitehorne, whose testimony (though he offered to confirme it with oath) was presently contradicted by another of their members. Why did not Mr Stucley according to the mannerE3 ner E3v 60 ner even of heathenish Romans, Act. 25. 16. (who in this shew the worke of the Law written in their hearts) require as an Officer, every one to speake out what they had to say against me? was it for feare lest they should be found Tripping as John Whitehorne was? I appeale to all impartiall Readers, whether it be not a most unrighteous judgement thus to condemne mee without being convicted, yea when I was cleared by Mr Rolls.

And farther let it be considered that I was so farre acquitted by the Ministers of this City, as that they gave mee the right hand of fellowship, notwithstanding their impeachments, which I believe they are ready to witnesse unto the Church, of God when it shall be required of them. This may suffice to be spoken in reference to the charge of lying in the generall.

I shall in the next place proceed to Answer the Particulars of this lying Charge, as I find them laid down by Mr. Stucley in another Pamphlet of his, Intituled Manifest Truth. Being an Angry Answer to Mr. Toby Allein, in in which he hath unbosomed and discovered himselfe more fully then in Mr. Mall’s Book. In pag. 41. and so onwards, he reduceth the grounds of my Suspension to three heads, Contentiousnesse, Censoriousnesse, and Lying, each of which he instanceth in severall particulars. The last of these I shall begin with, and answer in the E4r 61 the first place, which I shall do, having briefly considered what he saith concerning the grounds of my Suspension.

As to that suspension that Ezekiel Pace gave me notice of, I say that it was neer two months after I had left them, after I was withdrawen from their communion, which suspension (as the messenger said) was in order to my returne. By which I gather that the chiefe ground thereof was my going away: and that it is so, as also their Excommunication, almost three yeares after, will be manifested fully by my following answer; wherein I shall shew that they had no ground at all to suspend or excommunicate me for any of those three particulars mentioned by Mr. Stucley.

And first of lying, which in pag. 44, 45. he endeavours to prove in six particulars.

Instance 1. She affirmed, that she alwaies acknowledged Presbyterian Churches to be true Churches in respect of Doctrine and worship, and that it was hard for her to separate from the Presbyterians in distinguishing ordinances; whereas she excepted against Mr.Toby Allein, for having his child Baptized by Mr. Ford, and opposed his admission on that ground: there were 4 witnesses to this.

Resolut. This instance hath more of Craft (if I understand it) then either truth or reason, and may very well (I think) answer it selfe. E4 I E4v 62 I am here brought in opposing Mr. Allens suspension, and in other pages of his book he saith Mr. Allen consented to my suspension.

As Mr. Allen denies the one, so do I the other. But suppose I should have done it, they all know it was my judgment and my practice at that time: where is the lye?

I told them it was very hard for mee to separate in distinguishing Ordinances. And they may remember the same time I told them also what was my ground why I did separate: what can be gathered hence, but that I did that which was very hard for me to do, separate in distinguishing Ordinances, and dislike Mr. Allen, because he was not of the same mind?

But I am very much dissatisfied and offended with this charge, because it doth differ from the charge which I was charged with by them, which was this, namely for speaking against Mr Allen, because he did partake of the ordinance of the Lords supper with the Presbyterians.

And this I denied; my reason was, because I had never heard at that time, that Mr. Allen did partake with the Presbyterians in that ordinance; its now Seaven yeares since.

Instance 2. She affirmed that she never opposed Mris Dorothy Eveleighs admission, but was for it, whereas the generality of the then members of the Church witnessed, that a long E5r 63 long time she openly contended against it to the griefe of the Church.

Resolut. 1. I have marveild many times why they should question me about opposing of her, who was long before in her grave, and with whom I had loving and Christian converse to her dying day.

2ly, That I affirmed that I never spake against her is false, neither could I get any advantage by it, seeing others of the Church did the like, in whom it was not lookt upon as an evill. I might say more, but that I am unwilling to rake in the ashes of the dead.

3ly, I gave Mr. Stucley a Reason why I spake against her at the first, (which he himselfe mentions pag. 43. in the 4th. particular of Contention) not to have her kept off, but that she might acknowledge her sin in breaking the law of Charity &c.

4ly, That I did speak for her admission, Mr. Stucley himselfe witnessed it to Mr. Eveleigh in his own house, and also another of their members E.B. hath (as she told me) declared unto them that it was I who prevailed with her to consent unto the admission of Mris Dorothie Eveleigh.

Instance 3. She denied that she ever called the Presbyterian Churches by the name of Babylon, whereas most of the Church witnessed that she had often so called them.

Resol: E5v 64

Resol. What I answered Mr. Stucley when he did in a manner reprove me for acknowledging that to be a true Church, which formerly I had called Babylon, appeares in the Narrative. To which I shall farther adde

1 Suppose it were true, that I had in the heat of Contention at our first separation vented some rash and inconsiderate expressions in reference to the Presbyterian Churches, or the Presbyterians themselves, yet it ill becomes Mr. Stucley and the rest to be my accusers, who continue in the same practice; in judging me for this, they do but condemne themselves, according to that of the Apostle Rom. 2. 1. Why do they censure me now for this, seeing I am not guilty of it at present? why did not they admonish me for it formerly, when I was with them?

2 Would they even now be so faithfull unto me, as to name any particular time, place, or other circumstance that might bring such expressions to my remembrance, they should find me as ready to condemne my selfe, as they are to accuse me, if done in an orderly manner.

(3ly) It may be that which occasioned this report, was my mentioning of Babylons brats, at the time when I spake my Experiences.

I did then declare how hard it was for me to Separate from those who were godly, and whose ministry had bin so profitable unto me: But when E6r 65 when I considered the command of god, Touch noe uncleane thing, and I will receive you. &c. I conceived it did sufficiently warrant our Seperating from them: And farther I declared that there were many litle ones, Babylonish Brats, which must be dasht against the stones, which (I then told them) I did understand of things, not persons. But they, many of them, being newly crept into a forme of godlines, were so ignorant of that distinction, as what I spake of things, they interpreted of persons; which was so farr from my thoughts, as that when I began to read the Booke Intituled, (one blowe more to Babylon.) I lay’d it aside, as not being able to Close with the Author thereof, because of his many Reflections therein, though (as they all know) I had a high esteme of him, and did not use to slight him.

(4ly) When I did at any time afterward name Babylon, I never meant it but of Babylon in the Mystery, consisting either in the joyning of mens Inventions with Christs institutions; or in pressing of things indifferent upōon the conscience, as necessary; or in the setting up of mixtures in the Ordinances of Christ, So far as I apprehended any of these, I did declare against them: And for these very things doe I now declare against that Congregation from which I have departed, which I little thought at first would have bin found amongst them.

Instance E6v 66

Instance. 4. She denied that ever she endeavoured to have Mr Stoneham pastor, and under her owne hand were these words, I never laboured to bring him to that office; whereas the contrary was witnessed by three persons.

Resolut. What I affirmed in my letter I believed to be truth, neither have I reason to think the contrary: if it were as Mr Stucley sayth, More then three would have been able to witnesse it: ’tis true, he being an ancient non conformist, and very sensible of the evils under which the Church of God did formerly groane, I had a good esteeme of him; but that I laboured to have him Pastor, will never (I believe) be clearly proved, yea two or three of the chiefest of them, did witnesse in the meeting, that they never heard mee speake for him.

Instance 5. She affirmed that she never profitted by Mr Stonehams preachings, and never approved his Ministry, the contrary hereunto was witnessed by three persons.

Resol. What I affirmed concerning Mr Stoneham was in a letter in these words, (viz.) As for M. Stonehams preachings, I have had little benefit by it, but I have imputed it to my owne dulnesse in hearing, and did hope that when I was better acquainted with his method in teaching I should profit more by it: they that witnesse other then this witnesse a lie.

Instance 6. Shee denyeth in a letter, That shee E7r 67 shee suspected those that had Kindred and Relations among the Presbyterians, whereas many witnessed the contrary.

Resol. 1. If the contrary were true, then I must have suspected my selfe having Kindred and acquaintance that were Presbyterians, with whōom I had daily societie, & intimate communion, and whom I did highly honour, for the image of God shining in them; though our judgments differed.

2ly. Let them shew me the persons whom I suspected, and I will shew other grounds of my suspicion.

3ly. They themselves questioned me for my affections to those of different judgements, even Presbyterians, and therefore I cannot but wonder, that they should dare to charge mee with this.

This may (I hope) suffice with all judicious and impartiall Readers, for the wiping off that filth, which they flung after mee at my leaving them, in reference to lying, one of those three generalls to which he reduced the ground of my Suspension; the other two are contentiousnesse, and censoriousnesse, so he is pleased to miscall, Love and Faithfulnesse.

Contention. The first of these (Contention) he saith, pag. 41. in his Answer to Mr Toby Allen, was proved by many witnesses in six particulars.

Ans. E7v 68

Ans. As to this I answer, that I was cleared by the whole Church of this Impeachment, (as in my narrative) which all of them can witnesse if they will; since that time none of them ever undertook to prove it to my face.

I was so far from delighting in Contention, as that I complained of it to Mr. Stucley severall times, and also in a letter I told him plainly, that I was not able to live in the fire of Contention, nor sit down under a ministry that I could not profit by, and therefore I should willingly withdraw from them; which I did accordingly for this and other reasons, & therefore he hath little reason to accuse me of Contention. But he saith it was proved in these particulars.

Instance 1. In very many, if not in most of those debates which have been in the Church since our first coming together, she hath been usually silent, untill the Church have been ready to come to some determination, or had determined, and then she would object against what she perceived was the Judgment of the Church, and pursued it with much violence. This the generality of the then Church witnessed.

Sol. 1. Was I silent till the last? why may not Elihu’s Apologie be mine? Job. 32. 4, 5, 10, 11, 12.

2 My Assent was required to their determinationsminations, E8r 69 minations, and therefore it was very fit I should know what ground there was for them; especially considering that the then Church-members, the generality of them were novices in Christianity, and very weak in the first principles; so unacquainted with the Rule, as that they knew not how to behave themselves in the Church of God, knew not how to direct either themselves or others, in matters of faith or order, without instructions from abroad; yea we were then in a bewildred condition, without officers and some of the ordinances, and professed our selves to be a people that had lost our way, and that were seekers of the way to Syon.

3 As for my pursuing it with much violence, I know not what he meanes, unlesse it be that I refused to be satisfied with their determinations, when they gave me no sufficient ground for them.

Instance 2. Secondly, when it was moved in the Church to this effect, That it was very necessary to have respect in our admission of Church members to union in Judgment, (at least in all the ordinances of Christ) that peace and love in the Church might be preserved; she did eagerly contend against this motion, and occasioned long and sad disputes between the Church and her selfe, especially concerning singing of Psalmes, the practice of which she absolutely E8v 70 absolutely denied, and declared That praises and thanksgivings unto God in prayer were only that singing which the Scripture requireth. This also the generality of the then Church members did witnesse.

Sol. 1. Mr. Stucley was not present at this meeting.

2. Those who made this motion were some of them very weak and erronious in their Judgment.

3. When this motion was made, we were without some of the ordinances, and so continued for some yeares after this, And they who made this motion were of a very indifferent Spirit, as to the procureing them, untill they had setled themselves in publique offices. This was such a burden unto mee, as that I was very much dissatisfied; when as they (who needed some to enforme their Judgments) who made so litle Reckoning of the ordinances, should yet be so forward after union in Judgment: I conceived the worke we had to doe, was to free our selves from that Confusion in which we were, by getting officers and ordinances.

4. As to Singing of Psalmes, It’s true, I did at that time question it, which doth administer matter of daily humiliation unto me, to consider and remember the darknes of my minde, that hath and continually doth, cause mee to wander from the way of the lord to the right hand and to F1r 6971 to the left; But yet Mr Stucley hath litle Reason to Charge me with it, for,

1. He was the first that unsetled mee as to this practise, by Speaking against it himselfe, &

2. Some of his members have spoken more slightingly of this ordinance then ever I did, in affirming that one who was possessed of the divell would singe Psalmes, that they who sunge Psalmes, sunge lyes &c.

3. The generality of the People that were for seperation every where Scrupled Singing, as to the matter, manner, place or time: So that it was a vaine thing as such a time to Expect union as to this ordinance, much more to presse it so eagerly, as to make it a necessary qualification of Church member ship, when as the Apostle sayth, Him that is weake in the faith receive you, but not to doubtfull disputations: whereupon I did oppose, not union, so much as the pride and irregularity of three members,

Mr Owen, and John Whitehorne (then servant to Mr Mayne) who tooke upon them to deny Admission unto two persons who proposed themselves, because they differed in judgment about the Circumstance of this ordinance, and that before it was debated by the Church (consisting at that time onely of eight or nine persons) when as admitting or refusing of persons was then accounted a Church act, that which was to be debated by the whole. These persons did F affe- F1v 7172 affectionately declare, that they were in the darke about the manner of singing, not knowing whether it were a praising of God in a musicall tune, or praising of him in prayer: one of them being asked, whether shee looked on singing of Psalmes as an ordinance of God, shee answered, that she lookt on praising of God, as an ordinance of God, and as for singing, as not used, she could not say but it might be an ordinance of God, however it was doubtfull to her: This person was afterwards received into the Church, and hath attested this under her owne hand; so that its evident, these words were spoken by others, and if I did afterwards speake them, it was on the behalfe of those persons whose judgement I spake, more then mine own. And farther, the desire I had to be informed concerning it, put mee upon objecting many things against it, especially when Mr Stucley was present: for this cause also was I very earnest with them to procure an able Minister, as all the then Church can witnesse.

Instance 3. Thirdly, she hath opposed severall persons in their Admission, who have beene knowne to be of approved godlinesse and integrity; and those who have beene most lyable to Exception, she hath most contended for, insomuch that the Church, having respited the admission of a person concerning whose conversation they were not sufficiently satisfied; she did F2r 7073 did openly declare against it, in these words, That it was an unrighteous sentence: this particular was witnessed by foure persons.

Resol. As to the former part of the Accusation, my opposing persons (reputed godly) in their admissions, I answer,

1. They themselves have done the same, as appeares in my answer to the Accusation immediately preceding this: They denyed admission to two persons, esteemed godly, because they scrupled Singing, and for their unwillingnesse to speake their Experiences in a publique meeting.

2. I never opposed any for their godlinesse, and as for any who were esteemed godly, I never opposed them alone, without other members, why am I therefore more Contentious then they?

3. They were not all godly whom I opposed, as is evident in Ganicle, who after his Admission (which I withstood) turned Quaker.

As to the second part of the Accusation, my contending for those who were most lyable to exception, I answer. The persons I contended for are now many of thēem Church-members, and such (I conceive) as Mr Stucley, and the rest, do not now looke upon as lyable to exception.

As for the person concerning whom I used those words, that it was an unrighteous sentence, it was A.P. one generally accounted F2 godly, F2v 7274 godly, yea Mr Stucley himselfe hath given this Testimony of her often, that she would oppose Sin where ever she found it, that shee would not feare to Reprove it, where ever she came, shee being in fellowship with us from the first beginning, did at length propose her selfe to be admitted a Church-member, but this was denied her, because of her unwillingnesse to declare her Experiences in a publique meeting, this was the onely reason (that ever I heard) why she was then kept off.

Afterwards, when the Admission of members began to be in private, she proposed her selfe againe, but was refused the second time, because that some had a prejudice against her, for which (as I conceived) they had little reason, the things whereof she was accused were triviall, neither were they sufficiently proved, yea Mr Stucley himselfe cleared her, as to some one of the particulars: and although she was in societie with us for some yeares, yet she was not permitted to speake for her selfe: Her companion also, a Church-member, who lived continually with her by reason of her many weaknesses, was ready to answer for her, but it would not be permitted.

After this meeting was dismist, I desired M. Stucley that I might not be present at such debates, for I lookt on this as an unrighteous judgement, of which he seemed then to take no great F3r 7375 great notice: if he were offended at that expression, why did he not presently examine what ground I had for it? why did hee not convince me of the Equity of their proceedings? which untill it be done, I cannot but looke on it to this day as an unrighteous sentence, such a sentence as they have cause to be humbled for. It is not unknowne to those, who were acquainted with her, how that she was a person that had beene under great Terrours of minde, and affliction of spirit, even from her youth, that she walked very sadly continually, partly by reason of the weaknesse of her body, and partly by reason of those temptations, with which her whole life was accōompanied. so that it is not to be wondred at, if she were troubled at her being twice refused admission, by those whom she did so highly honour; and that she was so exceedingly troubled at it, appeares by what she said to mee two daies before her death, which was within few dayes after they had denyed to admit her, she then told mee that their cruell dealing was the cause of her death. And when shee was told that death could not come till his commission was sealed by him who had the keyes of hell and death; she answered, shee knew that very well, but yet they were the instruments which had effected it: shee desired mee likewise to tell them of their pride and cruelty, and to beware of F3 them F3v 7576 them; she likewise grieved very much that Mr Stucley came not unto her when she sent for him in her sicknesse: however she testified her love unto the Church and him, by leaving them both Legacies: the morning after she dyed Mr R. (as I heard) came to the house, and did with teares in his eyes, tell her companion to this effect, that he and his wife had blessed God solemnly for that they had no hand in this censure. Mr Stucley himselfe honoured her so farre after shee was dead, as to preach her funerall Sermon: by all which it appeares how little reason hee hath to charge mee with being dissatisfied with their censuring her, and calling it an unrighteous sentence, when as others besides my selfe did not looke on it as righteous.

Instance 4. Shee opposed the Admission of D. E. for her Joyning with the Presbyterians in the ordinance of the lords Supper, & insisted upon it with much Earnestnes, shee then declareing that shee could not be satisfied otherwise, then by her acknowledging it to be her Sin in breaking the law of Charity: This was witnessed by Seaven persons.

Solution. This cannot prove me Contentious, any more then the generality of them, who have acknowledged that they did speak against her; and some of them told me, that whereas I had one thing against her, they had twenty: yea Mr. Stucley himselfe was so dissatisfied with her F4r 7477 her, as that he took advice with another minister about her; but I remember the law of Charity to the dead, and therefore forbear to adde any more, but refer the Reader to my Narrative, where she is brought in as a witnesse against me for lying, as she is here to prove me contentious. Surely if Mr. Eveleigh did ever love her whiles she lived, the best testimony he can give of it will be by letting her alone, to rest quietly in her grave, and not urge me any more to publish that, which the law of Charity requires to be concealed.

Instance 5. She caused a great deale of disturbance amongst us after the Officers were chosen, in pressing with much earnestnesse that Mr. Stoneham might be chosen Pastor: this was witnessed by three persons.

Resol. I know not what he meanes by disturbance, nor who was disturbed, neither have I any ground to believe that I caused the least disturbance to any, as to this particular. If I had caused such a great deale of disturbance amongst them, it might have been witnessed by more than three witnesses. And as for Mr. Stoneham I wonder they should alleadge him as an Instance of my Contentiousnesse now he is absent, who when he was present in the name of the Church pronounced me innocent, as to this very impeachment, after he was Officer.

Inst. 6. She did a long time contend for womensF4 mens F4v 7678 mens speaking in the Church; and being admonished for practising accordingly, she did openly professe that she would not be present at Church meetings when matters were debated, unlesse she might have that liberty, and being denied, she ever since contemptuously neglected Church meetings, and slighted the officers of the Church.

In pag. 20 of Mr. Mall’s book, he laies down the charge in these words. She took liberty of speaking in the Church for some time, and being reproved by me for it, from time to time there was a visible decay of affection to me &c.

Solut. That it is false, as to the whole charge taken together, appeares, in that there are none (as in the former particulars) mentioned who did witnesse it, neither will he ever find any (unlesse they be desperately hardned) that dare affirme it, which I shall make evident in my Answers to the severall particulars thereof.

As to the first particular (viz.) she took the the liberty of speaking, and she did a long time contend for womens speaking &c.

To this I answer,

1. As for womens speaking it was usually practised amongst us by the rest of my Sex. And it is well known that the power was pretended at first to be in the body of the people, in the multitude, so that every one had the libertyberty F5r 7779 berty of assenting or dissenting, of arguing and debating any matter proposed, whether men or women. If women were denied the liberty of speaking, how could they declare their Experiences: yea A. P. was kept off for refusing this.

2. It is false that I took the liberty of speaking, it was not only given me, but the liberty of being silent was denied me, and that by Mr. Stucley himselfe, who would send for me at the meetings, even then when there was never a woman of the Church but my selfe: and afterwards many times he would single me out in the meetings, and urge me very earnestly to declare my Judgment in reference to what had been proposed.

3. As to my contending for womens speaking, by my former Answers it appeares, that Mr Stucley hath little reason to charge me with it, unlesse he expected that I should be as fickle as himselfe, in taking up, and laying down opinions and practises, as they suited with, or thwarted his humour and interest.

As to the second particular, whereas he saith he admonished and reproved me for it from time to time, I answer,

That all the Admonition and Reproofe I had from him, was that mentioned in my Narrative, viz: that my speaking was disrelishd by some, whereupon I resolved Silence for the future, F5v 7980 future, although I had looked on the Contrary as my duty formerly; which resolution I accordinglie kept alwaies after the Officers were chosen, unlesse it were when I was required to give in my thoughts concerning a person, proposed or asked a question; yea Mr. Stucley witnesseth for me in the charge it selfe, where he saith, it was a long time that I contended for womens speaking, and in Mr Mall’s book for some time &c. By which it is evident that I did not continue in the practise thereof to the last: how can then my speaking be brought as an Instance to prove me contentious (one ground of their Suspension) neer three yeares after I had left of this practise.

As for what he saith followed on his Reproving and admonishing me, viz. 1 A decay of Affection to him.

I answer, if there were such a visible decay of affection, he mistook the cause of it. It was not his reproving of me, no, the reproof was so mild and gentle, and at such a distance, as that I had litle reason to be angry with him for it. But it was his selfe-seeking, and minding his own things more then the things of Christ &c. against which I did declare my dislike both before and after this reproof and admonition.

As to what he saies, that after their denying me the libertie of speaking, I contemptuously neglected Church meetings, and slighted the officers.

I F6r 7881

I answer that it is a grosse lye, a lye so egregious, as that the whole church can witnesse (if they please) against it.

For I was after this constantly at church meetings, the liberty of speaking by a Brother being allowed me; yea I declared that I was very much dissatisfied, because the meetings (after the Officers were chosen) for conferring one with another, were not continued as formerly, I never absented my selfe, but upon some necessary hindrance, which was not often.

As for slighting of the Officers――

I answer, that I gave them so much honour as was due unto them according to my power; if they had not so much as they desired, let them consider whether they did not desire more then they deserved. They that rule well, are worthy of double honour.

3d Charge. The Censoriousness of her Spirit was evidēenced in her uncharitable language cōoncerning the Presbyterians, and us also: reporting one to be fallen from the faith, another to have nothing of God in her; charging Mr. Stoneham to have walked contrary to the Apostles counsell, 2 Cor. 4. 2. And to have such expressions in preaching and prayer, as were but as chaffe to the wheat. And imputing the afflictions of some of the church to their unworthy receiving of the Lords body. These were proved by many witnesses, and her own letters.

Ans. F6v 8082

Ans. As to the first Article, which concernes the Presbyterians, I answer, I must ackno wledge & confesse, that difference in judgement did likewise cause some breach in affection, that I was too much swayed with a spirit of separation, which made mee prone to censure those who differed from mee in judgment more then was fit, which I have cause to bewaile and lament. But yet I cannot but wonder that Mr Stucley should be so farre blinded with passion, as to censure mee for this, when it is well knowne that neither himselfe, nor any of his Congregation, are in a capacity to fling so much as one stone at mee upon this account. It is now the fifth time hee hath mentioned the Presbyterians in his threefold Accusation; for what reason, though he himselfe knowes best, yet others cannot be ignorant of, and as for the hope he puts in this, I believe it will prove but a Spiders web. I shall onely adde this, That if my Tongue were against the Presbyterians, so would my hand likewise, had I harkened to Mr Stucley.

As to my uncharitable language concerning themselves, he doth instance in severall particulars, which I shall answer in that order he layes them downe, having desired him in the generall to consider those reproachfull, bitter, unchristian Raylings against Mris Allen and my selfe, wherewith both his Pamphlets are full, and see whether F7r 8183 whether they doe not farre exceed all the hard speeches I have given of them.

As for the particulars they are (viz.) 1. My reporting one to be fallen from the faith.

Resol. I do not remember that ever I used such an expression in reference to any of them, as (fallen from the faith.) There was (its true) one, concerning whom, when they were about to choose him to be an Officer, I said, that I did feare he was not sound in the faith, for which I had good ground, neither did I hereby intend to reproach that person, but to prevent the evill that might follow, in case one not sound in the faith were chosen an Officer.

2ly. That another had nothing of God in her.

Resol. I never heard the least hint from them of any such expression, neither do I remember that I ever used it concerning any among them. If it be that person which I admonished, that is meant by Mr Stucley, as I have some ground to conjecture, for I cannot conceive who it should be else. Then I say that it is a grosse mistake, if no worse, to affirme that I reported, that shee had nothing of God in her.

Shee was a person that pretended to a great deale of Assurance, whereupon I was willing to have some conference with her, to know if shee had any ground for such an assurance. To this I was the more willing, because a member of the Church did somewhat question it, who desired me F7v 8384 me to try whether it were so or no, which I did: in my discourse I told her, that they who had this assurance knew how they came by it, that where there is assurance, there is likewise adherence, a closing with the promises, the workings whereof will be evident to that soul which hath attained it, that therefore she should do well to look to the ground of her confidence, and be sure that she had Scripture for it. What her answers were I shall not here mention; but it seemes she did not like this my plaine and faithfull dealing with her, as appeares by her complaining of it to some, who hereupon have now accused mee for being so censorious as to affirme that she had nothing of God in her, which is false; yea, I was so unwilling to dishearten her, as that I told her, that grace was in the hidden man of the heart, and not discernable many times where it is, though assurance hath alwayes its evidence. Had I knowne that they had been offended with me for this, I should have given them a full Account of what passed between us, whereby they would have knowne the truth of what was reported concerning her: this had beene farre better then to accuse mee for it so many yeares after.

3. As to that of Mr. Stoneham &c.

Resol. I must confesse that when Mr Stoneham refused to declare the End of that fast mentioned in my Narrative, I did look upon it F8r 8285 it as walking in Craftinesse, contrary to that of the Apostle, 2 Cor. 4. 2.

And as to his Expressions in preaching &c. I conceived Mr. Stucley the fittest to admonish him of his weaknesse; and therefore in a letter, I wrot unto him these following words. I shall intreat you to speak to Mr. Stoneham of those Expressions he doth often use to expresse spirituall things by; the word (I conceive) is fittest to expresse spirituall mysteries and duties: I am sure that is the sword of the Spirit, and that is able to make the man of God perfect, throughly furnished to all good works. The more wise the preacher was, the more he sought to teach the people wisdome, and to find out acceptable words, words of wisdome, that are as nailes and goads fastned by the master of the Assembly: I must confesse I cannot close with his Expressions which are usuall and ordinary both in prayer and preaching, which is as the Chaffe to the wheate; and what is the chaffe to the wheat? I should speak to him my selfe, but I fear he will not hear it from me.

The ground on which I went, was that of the Apostle: say to Archippus, take heed to thy ministry that thou fulfill it. Would it have been an ingenuous returne of Archippus to censure, suspend, or excommunicate a person for giving him such an admonition? let Mr. Stucley judge.

Lastly, concerning my imputing the afflictionon F8v 8486 on of some of the church to their unworthy receiving &c.

Resol. For answer hereunto, I shall here set down what I wrote in the same letter concerning it, viz.

It is and hath been a great trouble to me, that there is no meanes of instructing by Catechising, which is like, in my apprehension, to put a stop in the way of the Gospell. And I conceive the ordinance of the Lords supper cannot be kept pure, without instructing those that are of the Church, younger ones especially, in the mystery of discerning the Lords body: for this many are weake and sick, the Apostle laies it down as a Cause of that sicknesse and death that was amongst them. For my part it is my feare that the Lord hath a controversie with us for not discerning the Lords body, and not judging our selves. Surely the Lords hand that is upon us, and those afflictions that have been upon me, hath put me upon serious enquiry after the Lord in his word; and I am afraid we do not walk up to our own principles, and keep the ordinances pure.

Behold Mr. Stucley’s discretion and ingenuity in censuring me for censuring my selfe, which I did in that letter as well as others. I did impute the afflictions on my selfe and them, either to the omitting of the administration of the Lords supper for a long time, without giving any G1r 8587 any reason; or to our not discerning the Lords body, which I was perswaded that many amongst us by reason of their ignorance could not do, I did verily think that the Lord was angry with us for this. I was so sensible of Gods afflicting hand, as that I could not but discover my fear unto Mr. Stucley, that he might set upon reforming what was amisse, for I thought I had herein to do with Christians, and not with Scorners: it was the least of my thoughts, that ever I should be censured for it.

Having finished his threefold charge, he proceeds to adde somewhat concerning my contumacious refusall of admonition in pag. 45. of his Answer to Mr. Toby Allen, in these words: I might tell thee I have severall times endeavoured to convince her of her sin, yet I doe not remember that ever she acknowledged her selfe guilty, and that severall persons that were sent to her (or that went voluntarily) about the worke of admonition, came away from her with a burdned spirit. But I shall referre thee to 20 & 21 pag: of my Sermon in the true Account &c.

Here he tells the world that I refused admonition, first from himselfe, secondly from others, and then refers the Reader for farther Satisfaction to the true Account, &c.

1 As to his admonition he saith, I might tell thee I have severall times &c.

G Resol. G1v 8688

Resol, You cannot tell this without telling a lye, for I was never admonished by you for any sin that I continued in after admonition, either before my leaveing you or since.

Not before. This you acknowledged to me when I asked, whether you had ever admonished me, you told me you had not: this you confessed to Mr. Ford and Mr. Bartlett.

Not since. For I could never speak with you, after you had accused me of lying.

Its true you admonished me for hearing another minister; but that this is a sin, you dare not (it seems) affirme or maintaine: for it is not so much as named among those Crimes laid to my charge either in the true account, or in your Answer to Mr. Toby Allen. And therefore what reason is there that I should acknowledge my selfe guilty?

2 As to the Second (viz.) that severall persons that were sent unto her &c. came away with burdened Spirits.

Resol. The errand they came about was not to admonish me for lying &c. But partly to take me off from hearing other ministers, and since I left them to perswade me back again: it was my not consenting unto them in this, that made them go away with a burthen’d spirit, and not because of my proud and loftie Carriage (as he saith pag. 20 True Acc:) for I alwaies treated with them Civilly, returning them G2r 8789 them thanks severall times for their (pretended love) to me; I never baulkt discourse with them. And alwaies at their departing, said, let me be convinced from the word what my duty is, and I shall submit.

I desired the Elder before the fast in order to their Excommunication, and since that fast others also, that they would bring the businesse to a new Triall before the ministers, whom they themselves had acquainted with it formerly, and with whom I was then in Communion: had the Incestuous person done so, I am perswaded he would never have been delivered to Satan.

The letter likewise sent Mr. Stucley by Mris. Allen and my selfe makes it evident, that neither of us contemptuously refused admonition according to the rule of Christ.

3 As for his referring the reader to pag. 20. 21. of the true Account, as if there were other Crimes mentioned there, for brevities sake he omitted here, I say.

That in pag. 20 of the True (which yet some think to be a very defective) Account, there is only one Crime mentioned, which he hath not accused me of here in this other Book, and that is my unfaithfulnesse in not reproving privately.

Charge. I am confident (saith he) that there is scarce one Brother or Sister that can bear witnesse of her faithfulnesse in Reproving G2private- G2v 8890 privately, though she so much Blazon’d abroad supposed or reall infirmities, &c.

Resol. 1, I am Confident that some can (if they will not hold the truth in unrighteousnesse) bear witnesse of my faithfulnesse in reproving them privately, I reproved Mr. Raddon and his wife, Mr Eveleighs maide, yea Mr. Eveleigh himselfe, both privately, and publickly when his offence was publick, according to that of the Apost. 1 Tim. 5. 20. And if none of these will witnesse, yet Mr Stucley himselfe can, if he call himselfe to mind, he can bear me witnesse, that I reproved him for his indifferency of Spirit in the worke of God, for his preaching funerall Sermons, for his Serpentine subtilty in his Entrance on his Office, and in reference to his Carriage in Mr. Madder’s businesse, yea he hath witnessed that I reproved him for the unrighteous sentence in reference to A.P.

2 As for Blazoning abroad their supposed or reall infirmities, I know not what he meanes, or of what thing he speaks it, whether whiles I was with them, or since I left them.

If he mean thereby that when I was among them, I did discover the nakednesse of a Brother or Sister to others who were not in Communion with us, I say it is false, and dare him to instance so much as in one particular.

If by abroad, he meane others of the Society, I acknowledge it. But then it was to such as by G3r 8991 by reason of their intimacy and familiarity with the offendors might in all probability prevaile, more with them then I could. And for this very reason did I several times addresse my selfe to Mr. Stucley, which he acknowledgeth a litle before this charge, though, through Envy, he call it an Impeachment and accuse me for it, though I had the house of Cloe for my Example.

Lastly, If (By abroad) he meane that I have divulged their miscarriages to others since I left them, To this I answer.

That even since my leaveing them, It was my desire to continue a good opinion of many among them: So unwilling was I to make knowen that which might blemish any of them, As that I suffered in mine owne name, by concealing their miscarriages, untill such time as it was noised abroad, that I had not left them, but that they had cast me out as a lyer, a contentious and a troublesome person, whom they could no longer Suffer, nor have communion with: Then indeed I did begin to pull off their masking robes and vizards, as Mr Stucley expresseth it in the true Account, that so it might appeare to the world, how unlikely it was, that such (as many of them were) should cast off any up on the Account of lying. Againe,

Charge. In pag. 21. He brings in a passionate expression of mine in these words, And being farther G3v 9092 farther pressed to heare the Church, she refused, and (if my memory faile not) she said, She would be drawn asunder by wild horses rather then come among us.

Resol. I confesse the expression, whether there were not cause for it, let others judge, they having dealt so basely with mee as to accuse me of lying, when I went unto them a little before to give them a reason why I left them. A burnd child (we say) dreads the fire: I had been burnd once by adventuring singly among them, therefore I durst not do it againe the second time. So that Mr Stucley needed not here to insert this parenthesis (if my memory faile me not) it would have done better in all the other Articles of his accusation, in which, if his memory did not faile him, he will never be able to free himselfe from that, for which he pretends he hath Excommunicated mee.

But that I did not refuse to heare the Church, the severall answers I gave to the messengers sent me can witnesse. Besides, when M. Eveleigh came to acquaint mee with the Fast, in order to Excōommunication. I desired that the businesse my might be referred to Mr Forde, and Mr Bartlet, who had formerly heard it: and after the Fast I told two other of their members, that they should bring it to a new tryall before the Ministers of Exeter with whom I was in Communion, promising to stand to their determination.

The G4r 9193

The letter likewise Mris Allen and my selfe sent the Church, doth witnesse sufficiently, that neither of us refused to heare the Church.

Unto this Charge he addes that of separation.

Charge. And though shee had lifted up her right hand to heaven to heaven walk in fellowship with us, yet hath she separated from us, and to this day sought not reconciliation, neither hath shee expressed Repentance for her Sinne, &c.

Resol. This is likewise confest and acknowledged that I Seperated from them, The grounds of my Separation are layed downe in my narrative. To which I shall farther adde.

1. That there was a clause in our first Engagement binding every one of us not to rest in the light then received, but to Studie to knowe the minde of God, and live up to it, and so accordingly haveing Studied the minde of God, concerning our separation from other Churches of Christ, I founde it to be Sinfull, and therefore durst no longer to continue therein.

2. If I engaged so to walke in fellowship with you as to deny it to others of Gods people, of which there are many (I hope) in this Citty, I am Sorry for it, and to shew my Repentance I have reformed, by leaveing your Society. in which I could not continue without the guilt of Sin, If a man should promise, yea Sweare to that, which is Sin he had better to break then to keepe his oath.

Yea G4v 9294

yYea we were likewise engaged to hold communion with other Churches of Christ; But this is now denyed, unlesse it be with those that are Congregationall.

As for what he addes concerning my not expressing repentance for my sin: &c.

Resol. I shall answer with Job: c. 27. God forbid that I should justify you (by confessing that which I am not guilty of) till I die, I will not remove my integrity from me. My righteousnesse (as to your impeachment) I hold fast, and will not let it goe: my heart shall not reproach me (for basely submitting to any thing against my conscience) so long as I live.

In pag. 23. He speaks of my undervaluing, Excommunication & slighting it, in these words (viz.)

The other (meaning me) as little valued this Institution of Christ for (as I am informed) she said, Excommunication was but as the breaking of a horse over the hedge, &c.

Resol. I have been heretofore, and am at present so far from slighting excommunication rightly administred, as that it makes me tremble to behold my selfe accused thereof, as if I slighted the ordinance it selfe: I look on it as an ordinance of Jesus Christ, as that Sword which he hath given his Church for the cutting off contagious members, as that, which he hath appointed and ordained to as high an end (for ought G5r 9395 ought I know) as any other ordinance, (viz) the destruction of the flesh, that the spirit may be saved in the day of the Lord Jesus.

And as for the slighting expression concerning this ordinance, with which he chargeth me.

I say it is a notorious slander, as he hath laid it down, the truth is, that to some, who spake about excommunication I told them how it had been formerly abused in this nation by many who (as it was reported) would excommunicate for such a Trespasse, as a horse to break over a hedge; and farther added, that I valued an unjust excommunication no more then I did that: and because I look on Mr Stucleys late excommunication as such, therefore do I set light by it: as Luther did by the Popes bull, for which he was never charged by any Protestant: in doing of which I am no more to be condemned for slighting this ordinance in generall then he. It will be found upon triall that Mr Stucley hath a farre lower esteeme of this ordinance, then my selfe, otherwise he would never have so abused it as he hath, for the promoting his own interest and carnall designes, which is the ready way to make it contemptible, in the Judgment and opinion of those who are not well acquainted with it.

Thus I have done with the true account, and now returne to what he saith farther concerning me in his answer to Mr Toby Allen: pag. 45. Her G5v 9496 Her Crimes and contumacy being very great: the Church thought themselves obliged to suspend her from Communion before ever she joyned in the Sacrament with any other.

Resol. That this Suspension was for no other crimes or contumacy, then my leaving them, and my refuseing to returne unto them: And therefore it was not thought sufficient to debarre me from communion with others of Gods people in this City, by those who heard the whole businesse, and throughly examined the Circumstances there of.

Char. In the next place he chargeth Mr Allen with a lye, for affirming. That the Quarrell between the Church and me began, because I had a mind to heare some other ministers which (he saith) is abominably false, and farther, that this was no particular for which I was ever admonished by the Church in pag. 45. 46. And again, he saith, That the Quarrell began in my contentious Spirit and sowing Divisions, and was increased by lying.

Res. 1 That I was admonished, for hearing other ministers, by the Church it is manifest by what is allready set down.

2 That the quarrell did not begin in my contentious Spirit, and sowing divisions; nor was encreased by lying: it is also apparent, as for lying, I was never charged with it till I left them: and as for contention, &c. I never medled with Church G6r 9597 Church affaires after the officers were chosen unlesse it were once in reference to a person proposed, when Ganicle interrupted me.

The Qurarell Brake out at a Tuesdayes meeting, Mr. Stucley was absent from that meeting and so knowes nothing of it but by the report of others, it so much concerning mee, I have reason to know it better then others: The account whereof according to my best Remembrance is this.

On the day before, being munday after dynner Mr. Stonham and his wife came to visit me, Before I could come to them, my husband, in discoursing with them sayed, that I had heard Mr. Ford the day before, when I came into the Roome, Mr Stonham looked on me with an Angry countenance and would scarce Speak, whereupon I asked his wife what did aile him, who ans wered that he was not well pleased with me for my goeing away to heare, she told me likewise that he did not like Mr Eveleighs maide, and farther added, that she heard that I had somewhat against her, she is (said I) a stranger unto me, and therefore it is my desire that she may be kept off one week longer untill I have informed my selfe concerning her, Then (said she) do you be present at the meeting to speak to have her kept off, this she desired with much earnestnesse.

On the Tuesdaie following after dinner MrSpragueG6v9698 Spraigue the younger came to me frōom Mr Stoneham (as he said) who had been with him the day before, and desired him to take me off from hearing Mr Ford. To this end (among other things) he told me, that those sheep, which had been used to meane feeding, were not fit for fat passture, it was the way to bring them to the scab: he likewise spake something about Mr Eveleighs maid, and earnestly desired me to be at the meeting. I told him that I then lay under some trouble of spirit, and so could not be fit for such an Imployment, however upon his earnest intreaty, I fitted my selfe to goe.

When I was come, they began (contrarie to their usuall practice) to talke of the maid, before ever the Lord had been sought unto in prayer: Mr Owen, sitting at the table neer me, I willed him to acquaint them, that it was my desire she might be kept off a week longer (as I remember) untill I had informed my selfe concerning her.

Mr Eveleigh, presently replyed, that he would give Testimony for her: I told him that a master or superior was not so fit to give Testimony for a servant or inferior, and withall instanced in Gehazi, who carried himselfe fairly in his masters presence.

After this one Ambrose a shoomaker was proposed, who (it seemes) wrought with Ganicle, concerning whom Mr Eveleigh asked me whetherther G7r 9799 ther I had any thing against him? I answered that I had nothing, and also that though he were a stranger unto me, yet I had heard a good report of him: upon which Ganicle said that I would take his Testimony for his man, and not M. Eveleighs for his maid, yea (said Mr Eveleigh) that is the very thing, because it is my Testimony, therefore she will not take it, adding farther that it was scandalous, and that I was offensive or contentious, and had hindred their Proceedings for many yeares, insomuch as he could not partake with me in the Ordinances, untill he was satisfied.

I replyed, that this would not be borne, and that if my carriage had bin so offensive, I should have heard of it, in some other place and in some other manner: and then I presently appealed to all the Congregation desiring them to be faithfull unto me, as they would Answer it another day, by declaring wherein my carriage had been offensive, and what evils they had seen in me: And when I perceived they were unwilling to meddle in it, I told them plainly, that I would come no more among them, unless they would satisfie me herein.

At length Mr Stoneham began his prayer after this manner: Lord, we have waited for a prayer, and now thou hast given us in a prayer, it may be, the returne of many prayers, and then bewailed that the serpent was gotten into the garden: After G7v 98100 After the prayer, Mr. Eveleigh and my selfe were to withdraw; but Mr Eveleigh (before he went out) told them, he left it to the Church to determine, whether I were not contentious. Two things (said he) I have against her, Contention, and her going away to hear Mr Ford, which the Church neither can, nor will bear. And he farther charged John Whitehorne (the chiefest then in this businesse) that he should insist upon Contention, and if he wanted an Instance, that he should name Agnes Pullen.

When we were withdrawne, the generality of them said, they did believe I was a good woman &c. But then they were asked againe, whether through a mixture of Corruption it might not tend to Contention? to which this reply was made, That they did not know but it might. Mr. Stoneham told me, that they would not for a world charge me with contention, but did fear lest through a mixture of Corruption, it might tend thereunto.

Many of them were offended with the Elders dealing so disorderly with me, but knew not how to help it, and desired me to take no notice of it.

By all which it appeares

1 That they were very much displeased with me for hearing others besides our own Officers, though they were unwilling to quarrell with me openly about it. Mr. Eveleigh (tis G8r 99101 (tis true) accused me thereof at this meeting, but (as I am informed) some of them did very much dislike his mentioning of that particular; and refused to medle with it, because they thought it fitter to be concealed, then that it should be publickly taken notice of.

2 That it is very probable they had a resolution (some of them) to quarrell with me about Mr. Eveleigh’s maid, in case I could not be prevailed with to leave off hearing of other ministers, why else should they be so earnest with me (after I had given a sufficient Excuse for my absence) to be present at the meeting? why else should Mr. Stoneham use such expressions in his prayer.

3 That although Mr Eveleigh at this time (when the Quarrell brake out) accused me of Contention; yet that the Quarrell did not begin in my contentious spirit, and sowing divisions, is apparent. 1 Because I did no more then Mr Stoneham approved of, and Mris. Stoneham desired me to do; so that I could be no more contentious in opposing Mr. Eveleighs mayd, then they. 2 This businesse was ended in three daies; they had nothing after this against me, but my hearing other ministers, as Mr. Eveleigh himselfe told me.

4 And therefore notwithstanding the quarrell brake out at the time, when I opposed Mr. Eveleigh’s maid, yet it is very apparent that it began, G8v 100102 began, was continued, carried on, and increased even to a breach, only for my hearing of another minister: for as to the charge of lying I never heard of it till my coming off, as I have already declared.

In the next place he takes shame to himselfe, that he did not sooner excite the church to their duty, as to the last Remedy for the healing of this woman, &c.

Resol. I believe in the end he will see more cause to take shame to unto himselfe, in that he hath so rashly excited them to this censure, before he ever discharged the duty of admonition.

Let him consider whether he hath not run before the Lord sent him, let him produce his warrant to Excommunicate, before ever he proved the Crime, or admonished me of the Evills, for which he saies I am Excommunicated.

He addes, that there are some full of evill surmises about this matter, as if the Church would never have proceeded against her, but upon a designe to hinder others from deserting us.

Resol. It is no surmise, for

1 One of their own Officers (Mr. Slade by name) talking with an Alderman of this City about this Excommunication, told him that if they had proceeded against me sooner, Mris. Allen would not have left them.

2 Mr. H1r 101103

2 Mr. Stucley doth not in plain termes deny it. And though that which follows concerning the unquietnesse of his spirit about my not Repenting may imply a deniall, yet

3 It is that which he hath in a manner acknowledged in pag. 10. of the True Account, in these words, If we had discharged our duty sooner on the lyar, we might have prevented the others fall, her disobedience and perversenesse of spirit.

As for that he professeth, he had no quiet in his Spirit, that a Person should lie so long suspended, and give no Evidence of Repentance, but the Contrarie &c.

Resol: The Suspensionwas two moneths after I had left them; the messenger that was sent to give me notice thereof sayd it was in order to my Returne, a Returne to them, this is the Repentance they expected, and I resolved against, unlesse (as I told the Elder) I might have communion with them, and not to separate from others that were godly.

But what quiet can Mr Stucley have now, that he hath passed a Sentence of Excommunication without admonition, seeing I so earnestly desired it? vwhat comfort can he have in passing this Censure three yeares wanting a few daies after I had left them? when as in all probability by reason of forgetfulnesse, there could not be a charging of sin, so as to convince and work a kindly Repentance.

If his conscience had troubled him, because H of H1v 102104 of my lying in Sin, without evidencing Repentance, then his conscience is either blind or baffled; else why had not his conscience checkt him, when he discovered no zeale against lying, when he was so often prest unto it by me? why had not his conscience troubled him, when there was a lye affirmed with so much Confidence by John Whitehorne, when he offered to depose it upon Oath, and yet there was clear Testimony brought by some of their members to prove it to be a lye? this person is under his charge, yet here his conscience hath not disquieted him.

And for what he addes, That to quiet his conscience he tooke advice with severall Ministers, and so concluded the matter by them and his own Conscience.

Resol. 1. Why did he go so farre away? had he desired to have the truth brought to light, then why should he refuse to advise with those Ministers that he himselfe acquainted with the businesse; and when I so often desired them to bring it to a new tryall before them, with a promise to submit unto their determinations, without expecting any favour from them.

2. How could those Ministers (whoever they be) perswade him to such a censure, without advising him to bring the businesse to a Triall, without hearing both parties speake? will not Festus rise up in judgement against them? Did these Ministers in their advice duly weigh the weight H2r 103105 weight of this Ordinance, and the pretiousnesse of soules for which Christ did Sweat, Bleed and died, for which hee ever lives to make intercession? Durst they upon the Report of one partie without Examination, give such advice in a corner? the Lord lay not this sin to their charge: ’Tis not the first time that Satan hath made use of such instruments, Christ saw him in a Peter &c. I confesse it would have been more easily borne, if they had been such as have not knowne the Father, nor the Lord Jesus, that had given this wicked advice; but that it should come from them, who have (or at least pretend to) more acquaintance with Christ then others, this is as the Vineger and the Gall.

Charg. p. 47. In the last place hee gives the world a Catalogue of lying defamations, spoken by mee since my Suspension.

Resol. As for those lying defamations, I answer briefly: That many of those Reports are no lying Defamations, but manifest truths, as I have made it already to appeare in my Narrative and Vindication; and make no question but shall be able to do the like of the rest, if called unto it, even as many of them as he shall prove to proceed from mee, farre better then Mr Stucley will be able to make good (in a regular and orderly proceeding) those slanderous reports concerning mee, with which he hath filled the world, notwithstanding he boasts so much of witnesses, at the end almost of every Charge.

And now I suppose the Reader is sufficiently tired with perusing an unpleasing and broken History, I H2 shall H2v 104106 shall therefore now hasten to an End.

If the Gospell be the great Salvation that is delivered by Christ himselfe, and the Revelation of it compleated, and it be once delivered to the Saints, and no other Revelation to be expected till Christ come, and this Salvation being so glorious, as that the Angels desire to look into it, and there being such a Curse by Christ pronounced on such as shall adde to it, or take from it, then let it serve as an Apology for me in my learning of them. This was that which I did desire and aime at, that I might be instructed in the mystery of this great Salvation, God manifest in the flesh &c. Tis that was in my eye, and that I still follow after (although I have not yet attained) to comprehend with all Saints what is the bredth, and length, and depth, and heighth, and to know the love of Christ, which passeth knowledge; yet through grace this was, and is that one thing, that I may know Christ and him crucified, and that I may with the Apostle Phil. 3. 12, 13, 14. know him, and the power of his Resurrection, and the fellowship of his Sufferings, so as to be made conformable to his death, that I may know this great mystery which hath been hid from other ages, but is now revealed unto us by the holy Apostles and Prophets by the Spirit, Eph. 3. 1. Know him so, as to bear about in my body the dying of the Lord Jesus; that the life of Jesus may be made manifest in this mortall flesh, that the old man may be Crucified with him, that the body of Sin might be destroyed, that I might not serve sin; This was that which to the glory of free grace I can say in some measure (if H3r 105107 (if my heart do not deceive me) was my desire in Joyning with them, and in my withdrawing from them, I finding not a Sufficiency in their Ministry for edification and building up; and being disapointed of my expectation in the ministry, and continuing my practice of hearing Mr Ford, sometimes once a Lords day meerly out of necessity, and observing what they did after they were in office and setled themselves, in stead of discovering their love and faithfulnesse to the peoples soules in their diligent circumspection and watchfulnesse over them, and discovering to them the hidden mysteries of the Gospell, they were very remisse, the worke they were imployed in was to exalt themselves, and bring the people into Subjection unto them, silenceing some, and censuring others without allowing them any liberty to clear themselves, such as they supposed stood in their way, and when this was effected, then they proceeded farther to take them off from hearing any other minister, making that practice of hearing another minister, when themselves preached, to be a going out of the Bosome of Christ into the Bosome of Strangers; and such persons were Traytors and Rebells to Jesus Christ, and should be so dealt withall; and what benefit was received by another minister to be a delulusion and a Temptation, and a Judgment of God upon the soule. And ingaging the people at their admission, to believe it as an Article of their faith, that a greater blessing was to be expected on their ministry, then on any others, as if they preached another Jesus, or another Spirit, or another Gospell: when the ApostleH3 stle H3v 106108 stle sayeth, he that planteth and he that watereth are one, 1 Cor. 3. Was there not a cause to suspect what they intended, but the liberty of dissenting was denyed, and they proceeded to lay aside their meetings for to conferre together, and to consider one another, and the ordinance of the Supper, that was layd aside a long time, fasting was perverted to carry on their own designes, and to keep the people ignorant of the occasion and ground of their fast.

I being troubled at this, and resolved not to be Silent to see what was done by them, but rather to suffer, did discover my dislike of these practises, and blamed them to their faces for walking in craftinesse, contrary to the Apostle, 2 Cor. 4. 2. and perverting and laying aside of the ordinances, then insteed of giving me any satisfaction (as I expected) did they craftily conspire to entangle me, to fall to dispute about true Churches. And to seek occasion against me, to defame me, and as if there had not been sufficient above ground, rakt up the dead out of her grave, and made matter to frame an accusation against me, for doing that which themselves the generality of them did the same, as some of them have since acknowledged, and in what they accused me Mr Stuckley himselfe cleared me, and here is the ground of all their charge of scandall, which how cruell, and unjust, and unreasonable it is, I leave to the impartiall reader to Judge.

Thus seeing Gospell priviledges, purity of ordinances, and liberty of conscience lay a bleeding, and they walking contrary to their principles, and often engagements, and having no way to free my selfe from H4r 107109 from partaking with them in their evils, not only the liberty of speaking but of dissenting being denied, unles it were purchased upon such termes as their ensnaring of me, and of looseing peace and a good name, I not daring to make it known to other members, lest I should be accounted contentious, having had experience of the people formerly, and seeing the officers to be masters of the ordinance, insteed of dispensors, and to lord it over Gods heritage, as if they had dominion over our faith: after often seeking of the Lord and enquiry in his word according to that light I had received, after I had declared my resolution and my grounds to the elder, I withdrew, according to the Apostles rule, 1 Thes: Hoping that by my withdrawing they might be more convinc’t, and that in time the Lord would make them sensible of their usurpations, when they saw what effects were produced, and so might put a stop for time to come to such proceedings: and though I could expect little favour from them, unlesse the Lord did convince them, and so humble their Spirits, yet having the Testimony of mine own conscience, that I could say in in some measure with the Apostle, herein did I exercise my selfe to have alwaies a conscience void of offence towards God and towards man: and I considered that I should hereby keep and preserve mine own peace, in having no hand in exalting of men and so opening a way to bring in mens inventions, and to worship God according to the precepts of men.

And Mr Stucley himselfe in his Sermon on that black and dark day hath acknowledged (as the Copie H4 taken H4v 108110 taken from his own mouth will testifie) that I separated from them on pretence of conscience, he might have left out the words (on pretence) unlesse he take upon him to Judge the heart and conscience, although Mr Mall in his printed True account (as he cals it) hath not afforded me so much charity as to put in that perticular.

And Mr Stucley himselfe afterwards pag. 23. saith that I went away to avoid the censure; here he contradicts himselfe more waies then one, for 1. If I went away to avoid the censure, then I could not separate on pretence of conscience, but if this be denyed (as the leaving it out of his printed Sermon may inferre so much) 2. If I went away to avoid the censure, then he must be forc’t to deny that I am excommunicated justly for lying, for how could I goe away to avoid the censure for lying, afore ever I knew I should be charged with lying, for I was never charged by him with lying untill such time as I had really withdrawen and separated from them.

The like Mr Allen hath allready declared of his wife, pag. 24. of his Truths manifest, that the pretended crime or cause of excommunicating her, was in time long after she left them.

Therefore (Reader) take notice of his grosse contradiction of himselfe in what he affirmes.

And whereas he pretends that he had no quiet in his spirit that a person should lie so long suspended and give no evidence of Repentance, and in his prayer, that they have not past their censure in a revengefull way, and that they could not answer the neglect of their censure one day longer.

If H5r 109111

If it be so, why must he take liberty to himselfe to defame me in my name, if it were the sinne only he aymd at? & why did he use such Epithites, as, discont¯ented lyer, notorious lyer, egregious lyer, Bryer in our sides, companion for damned spirits, when as his conscience must needs tell him, that he never accused me of one lie all those years that I was in fellowship with them: And if he found me guilty of a lye, let him produce what lye it was, I never heard of any yet, whiles I was with them, and when since I left them, he charged me at first, it was then with an untruth.

And although I desired in our letter sent them to have the cause heard by understanding and impartiall men and promist to Submit, yet he slighted that, and hath taken libertie in pulpit and in print to render our names and our persons odious to all the world, as if the sword of excommunication had not been sharp enough, unlesse it were sharpned by him at the Philistins forge, and in the meane time takes liberty to himselfe to practice that for which he pretends he hath censured me for lying, I could instance in severall of their charges that they are no other but lies.

Not to mention the severall reports that have been spread concerning me, as not worth the taking notice of, which have one contradicted the other, and not two of the Reporters found in one tale, as hath been taken notice of (as I am informed) by a person of credit, this is not worth the taking notice of.

But that false report that hath been raised by them and spread in citty and countrie on Mr Ford the minister,nister, H5v 110112 nister, that he should slight lying, and that say lying was the property of a woman.

Whereas the truth is, that when Mr Ford and Mr Bartlet Ministers, and Mr Stucley and Mr Eveleigh were met at Mr Fords house, Mr Stucley and Mr Eveleigh accused me of Scandall, and brought in a charge of lying against me, instancing in Mris Eveleigh and my speaking against the Presbyterians (which I have allready answered) Mr Ford still cald for more, more charge: then to make up their accusation, they said that I was fickle, Mr Ford answered them, that is as much as to say, she is a woman, this I know to be the truth; and yet the report is spread by them in City and Country, that he said that lying was the property of a woman: and herein have they discovered their falsehood and rage against such an Eminent labourer in Christs Vineyard, who hath given abundant Testimony that he seeks not himselfe but the things of Christ.

And as for Contention, how hath Mr Stucley discovered himselfe guilty to all the world, Doeg like, falling on Magistrates and Ministers whom he supposeth stands in his way, as his Sermon and printed books do witnesse.

Give me leave to take notice of it, as David, when he heard how Saul had cut off the Lords Priests (saith he) I have occasioned the death of all these.

And for Censoriousnesse, how doth it appeare? not by secret search, but upon their severall Accusations, wherein the greatest ground of their proceedings against me, hath been a censuring of the ends of my words H6r 111113 words and actions, which is Gods prerogative alone, who searcheth the heart, and tryeth the reines.

Let the Impartiall Reader judge whether they sought the glory of Christ, & to convince me of this sin, whēen it is that which was & yet is usually practised by themselves. Witnesse their usuall calling Mr Fords preaching Rayling and nonsence; and some of them would have the Pulpit shut against Mr Ford, and would have had the notes of his Sermons to pick occasion against him, and perswaded me not to hear him; and I was questioned many times for hearing of him, not only the Lords daies, but on Lecture daies also.

I cannot but take notice of Mr Mall in his reasons pressing them to renew their Covenant.

He saith, such poor wretches are given up to Judiciall hardnesse, so that they are sorry for nothing so much, as that they with such a Church entred into Covenant with God; and again, such wretches they have renewed their Covenant with hell and Satan.

For answer, what Covenant I have entred into with God, whether with them or any other, I desire still to own and acknowledge, that I am engaged unto to performe, and am resolved in the strength of Christ never to retract. And if in any particular I have denyed my Covenant with God, it lies upon them to convince me of it. It is not enough for them to charge Covenant breaking, and perjury, and Schisme: it lies upon them to prove their charge, otherwise I am not engaged to an Implicite faith to believe them.

I H6v 112114

I think our letter (we sent to them) will testifie, that we did not retract our Covenant with God, when we did professe our submission to the law and will of Christ, wherein I think we did own our Covenant with God more than they did, who by their Explicite Covenant engaged themselves to an Implicite faith, in subjection to Mr Stucley’s ministeriall guidance and teaching, without any restriction or limitation. And yet how doth he boast pag. 13. as if they were a company of believers that will part from life rather then from a little command, and their hands are fill’d with both Tables: is not this practice of theirs a contradiction to this profession, & yet pag. 29. exhorting them to keep to the Church of Christ, he tells them he cannot but approve of their purpose to subscribe a covenant, that will be a fence against a lawlesse Spirit.

Moses who was a servant in the house of God, and God testifies of him that he was faithfull in all the house of God; see Deut. 33. 4. Moses commanded us a law, even the Inheritance of the congregation of Jacob.

Is not this fence against lawlesse Spirits, that God hath prescribed his Church sufficient? but that Mr Stucley must engage the people to himselfe, as if his designe were to seek himselfe, and to espouse a people to himselfe, and not to Christ.

It was the commendation that the Apostle gives of his hearers, that they received the word with all readinesse of mind, and searched the Scriptures dayly, whether those things be so or no: but here they Ingage to absolute subjection to Mr Stucleys Ministry without any H7r 113115 any Caution, I the rather take notice of it, because they may consider, that whiles they are Censuring us, they forget themselves, and their Engagements to Christ, and to his Lawes; that whereas they have profest the taking Christ for their King and Lawgiver, now they set up men in the roome of Christ, without any mention of the Law and Septer of Christ: And yet he pretends that his booke (called Manifest truth) is set forth by him to prevent the Gospells suffering, although he ha th had a Bratherly admonition given him by the unknowne author, Diotrephes detected and Archippus admonished, yet he never takes notice of this particular, to give any Satisfaction unto it, or to remove the offence taken by it.

And now for a close of all I shall desire Mr Stucley to retyre himselfe a little from the world and those multitudes of designes hee is at present so much entangled with; having done this, seriously and sadly consider a while of that great day of accounts, wherein the hidden workes of darknesse shall be fully discovered by him whose eyes are as a flame of fire: if he doth thinke in good earnest that there is such a day coming wherein he must by accountable for all his actions: let him I say, consider what account he can give to Christ of his late proceedings against Mris Allen and my selfe; will it (thinks he) be enough to say, that his credit and esteem in the world could not be upheld without it? that the Interest of that party with whom he sided consisted therein? that he had Majors, Collonels, Knights, Ladies, to stand by him; if he account these H7v 114116 these vaine and foolish pleas, now, why should hee? how dared he act upon such grounds now? His only way therefore will be to repent of this his wickednesse, and pray God, if perhaps the thoughts of his heart may be forgiven him; which will be more to his honour, then by Printing any more angry bookes against two weake women (who are not able to speake for themselves in Print (neither is it required) so well as men, (especially Schollers) to withold the truth in unrighteousness, to oppresse the Innocent, and to cover his own Sin, which whosoever doth, shall not prosper, the mouth of the Lord hath spoken it.